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May 22nd, 2010
09:00 AM ET

Dear Mr. President #488 "In the name of the law, stop that oil!"

When some of your critics (ahem, Republicans) lit into you in the first week or so of the Gulf oil spill, calling it your Katrina, I thought they were just playing dirty, stupid politics. Now, it is a month later, and I’m not so sure.

When some of your critics (ahem, Republicans) lit into you in the first week or so of the Gulf oil spill, calling it your Katrina, I thought they were just playing dirty, stupid politics. Now, it is a month later, and I’m not so sure.

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Reporter's Note: President Obama has had some strong words about the oil leak in the Gulf. What I’m wondering about in my daily letter to the White House is when strong action will be brought to bear.

Dear Mr. President,

When some of your critics (ahem, Republicans) lit into you in the first week or so of the Gulf oil spill, calling it your Katrina, I thought they were just playing dirty, stupid politics. The spill was a vastly different situation than Katrina from the get go, a private company was supposed to be on the case, and it was not so clear that this was an area in which the Feds had to come in with the heavy howitzers.

Now, it is a month later, and I’m not so sure.

This is undeniably the responsibility of BP, or the other companies involved. But at what point should the government simply elbow them aside? It seems like we are now screamingly close to the point (or well past it) in which you must say, “You clearly are not up to the task. We are going to unleash the full power of every possibly agency, from the Corps of Engineers, to the U.S. Navy, to the EPA, to NASA. Whatever it takes, we are going to stop this leak within the next two weeks, and then we are going to send you the bill. And if you want to pay by check that’s Obama, with one ‘o’ and I’ll need to see some kind of ID.”

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