“Allow them to drill, but do not allow them to tap into the reservoir,” Cao says, calling for partial lift of drill ban

June 15, 2010

Suggests Samurai-era Japan would have expected harakiri of BP exec

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Anh “Joseph” Cao (LA-02) called on the Obama administration to modify its six-month moratorium on deep water oil drilling.

Speaking on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, Cao said the BP oil spill has already devastated the economy of New Orleans and Jefferson Parish. “Hundreds of businesses have closed,” he said, “and thousands of people are out of work.”

Cao said the moratorium will only make matters worse, potentially costing Louisiana thousands more jobs in its oil and gas industry.

Cao said “there is a very simple solution,” one that will give the administration time to review safety procedures on offshore oil rigs and devise possible regulatory changes while saving all those jobs in the meantime: “Allow the oil companies to do partial drilling. Allow them to drill, but do not allow them to tap into the reservoir.”

Cao pointed out that “modern technology allows companies to know exactly where the oil is,” so they can pursue preparatory drilling but stop short of actually tapping wells until full-scale drilling resumes, thus keeping Louisiana’s oil and gas industry afloat without compromising safety concerns.

Later, in a hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Cao told BP America President Lamar McKay that he would have been treated more harshly long ago in Asia.

After Congressman Cliff Stearns called for McKay’s resignation, Cao said, “Mr. Stearns asked Mr. McKay to resign. Well, in the Asian culture, we do things differently. During the Samurai days, we just give you a knife and ask you to commit harakiri,” an act of ceremonial suicide.

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