Crist tells President Obama Floridians are getting fed up with oil leakby Dara Kam | May 24th, 2010
Gov. Charlie Crist told President Barack Obama Floridians are more than a little impatient about the massive oil leak now in the 35th day pumping thousands of barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico.
Crist said the president joined him and the four other Gulf Coast state governors this morning on a conference call concerning the BP disaster.“We’re all very concerned. I mentioned to the president, I said ‘I appreciate the sense of urgency. And In addition to that, though, on behalf of my fellow Floridians, there’s a bit of agitation. More than a bit.’ Florida’s beautiful. And we’ve got to protect her,” Crist told reporters at a Florida National Guard welcome-home this afternoon.
Crist said president’s participation on the near-daily White House telephone briefings assured him that Obama is “on it” and that “we’re going to see a stronger response going forward.”
Crist, now running as an independent for U.S. Senate, applauded Obama’s commitment to “doing everything possible” to keep Florida beaches clean but is clearly frustrated by the continuous plume of oil now headed toward the Florida Keys.
“I want to make sure all hands are on deck. Number one, I want them to plug the darn hole. Obviously. Number two, make sure we have enough boom, especially for our sensitive areas…and just protect Florida. That’s what I want to do. That’s what we need to do,” Crist said he told Obama.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has complained that the response to the leak is too slow and the federal government should push BP out of the way and take over the clean-up.
“I’m moving toward that direction. I can tell you that. The sense of urgency I know our fellow Floridians feel is clear and present. No question about it. We have Memorial Day weekend coming up. We continue to have all this oil spewing out of the Gulf of Mexico. I mean, they need to plug the hole. That’s the most obvious, straight-forward thing I think all of us share and understand,” Crist said.