What a difference an election makes.
On the campaign trail, Gov. Elect Rick Scott was pretty circumspect about offshore oil drilling when he was asked about it in the Panhandle, which overwhelmingly voted for the Republican. Now that he's about to be safely ensconced in the governor's mansion, though, Scott today issued a statement that dropped all that campaign-trail talk about drilling in "environmentally sound way and adhering to the strictest of safety standards."
For Scott, offshore drilling is a two-fer issue: a chance at energy independence (even though offshore Gulf oil is nowhere near Mid East production capacity) and its another opportunity to bash President Obama for being a job killer. While enviros and coastal chamber-of-commerce types would disagree with that sentiment, it's certainly true that offshore oil drilling was a job creator for some Floridians hired to clean beaches after the Macondo blowout.
Anyway, here's Scott's statement:
“The Obama Administration's offshore drilling ban is yet another example of government regulation impeding economic growth. Florida is committed to pursuing energy independence, which is essential to national security. With sound policies in place, we could expand domestic drilling and eliminate our reliance on foreign oil. Furthermore, I am disappointed that the White House has chosen to unilaterally impose a policy that threatens job creation and economic growth in Florida without consulting our office.”