Just 20 days before the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, Southern California’s U.S. Representative Ken Calvert made the following comment about the safety of offshore oil drilling: “With new and emerging technologies, offshore energy development can be pursued with little to no visible impact on the coastline and in a way that protects the surrounding environment. That is why I introduced the MORE Act…”
H.R. 797, the MORE Act that Congressman Calvert refers to, is the kind of legislation that big oil companies like BP dream about. If passed, it would radically expand offshore drilling along America’s coastlines. In some states, the Maximize Offshore Resource Exploration Act would allow “offshore” drilling to take place right up to the beaches and wetlands at the water’s edge.
Though Representative Calvert has been eager to expand offshore drilling, he hasn’t shown the same energy in considering the suffering that results from that drilling. When H. RES. 1347, a congressional resolution expressing sympathy for the eleven oil rig workers who were killed when the Deepwater Horizon exploded, was introduced, Ken Calvert’s name was not among the long list of cosponsors.
Bill Hendrick, Calvert’s opponent in this year’s election, is noting Calvert’s long-standing support for the policies that made the Deepwater Horizon oil spill possible, and is offering voters a cleaner alternative. Hendrick pledges, “I will fight to preserve our coast and beaches, and I will NEVER support expansion of offshore drilling in Californiaâ€™s waters.”