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May 28th, 2010
09:14 PM ET

Evening Buzz: BP Shipped in Workers for Presidential Visit?

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Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

There are new accusations aimed at BP over oil spill cleanup efforts in Louisiana. Jefferson Parish Councilman Chris Roberts accuses the oil company of shipping workers to Grand Isle for Pres. Barack Obama's visit today and sending them away after the president left.

"We have had very minimal cleanup crews", Roberts told CNN today about Grand Isle.  "Maybe at best about 20 people working the beach. We just find it highly coincidental that on the day the president arrives that BP would move to mobilize considerable assets when that has not been the case for several weeks now," he added.

Roberts said approximately 300 to 400 workers were at the location today. He'll be on the program tonight.

At a news conference late this afternoon CNN's David Mattingly asked BP Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles about the claim. We'll let you be the judge on whether BP is turning the spill into a PR stunt.

We've asked BP to come on the program to respond. This morning they agreed, but tonight they aren’t returning our calls. The offer still stands.

Anderson is reporting again tonight from the Gulf region. We'll have all the angles on Pres. Obama's visit today. Mr. Obama is facing criticism for bypassing some of the hardest hit areas and not staying longer to meet with the locals.

But others are grateful he came.

"We have a major catastrophe here, we appreciate him being here," Clyde Peregean told CNN's Ed Henry.

There's also the impact this disaster is having on fishing communities along the Gulf.  Fishing is a way of life and has been for generations. But for now that life has changed. Many boats aren't going out now. Tonight Anderson has an up close look at how the work still goes on for some without the boats. He followed crews as they pulled oysters from the water. The oysters have not been tainted by the oil. Some of their work continues, but they worry not for much longer.

Join us for these reports and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET. See you then.


Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Trish in St. Lou

    Could you please find out definitively why super tankers have not been brought in to quickly skim the oil. Apparently, this technique was used successfully in the middle east. On a morning news program today, Thad Allen didn't know why but suggested that there was too much boat traffic in the gulf to allow the super tankers in. His logic seems ludicrous to me. The idea to bring in super tankers has been suggested by the former president of Shell Oil for weeks!

    May 28, 2010 at 11:23 pm |
  2. Maree

    Hopefully the President will come back unannounced and get to the back areas that are affected. The State needs to cut the red tape and cord and just do what needs to be done, instead of just waiting. They can bill BP and fight them latter I see officials just saying what has to be done and then just waiting. Stop waiting and just do it. If you get in trouble what can they do to you if clean up is done. It is your community and you need to just do what needs to be done. Forget the politics...

    May 28, 2010 at 11:19 pm |
  3. Mahesh Soori

    We all should boycott BP. All the billion $ profits made by them came from additional dimes, nickels and pennies millions of people overpaid because most people consider it to be too inconvinient to go to a discount seller. Giving even an extra penny to these irresponsible oil juggernauts is a crime against humanity. Instead, why not save these pennies and give it to a charity or some one less fortunate?

    May 28, 2010 at 11:18 pm |
  4. Terry

    Looked more like county jail imates working time off to me, and I use the word, working, carefully.

    May 28, 2010 at 11:17 pm |
  5. Lyudmila Bloch

    BP will not appear on AC 360 because you're doing a fantastic job! Thanks for your compassion and support of LA. Keep it up!

    May 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm |
  6. trevor

    Ok, I'm Canadian and this is how I see it so far. I know my opinion really doesn't count but one day I may want to go to the Gulf for a vacation. BP has been lying and "putting things in place" when it's suited their PR, why is this such a surprise? They didn't feel a need to inform anyone that they had stopped pumping mud yesterday for 16 hours, and an omission of fact because it wasn't "felt to be a relevant piece of information" is no different than a lie. Lots of ppl are saying Obama and his administration aren't doing enough. Hey folks, is this his fault, does he own and operate the "damn hole?" NO!!! How can he be expected to do his job the way everyone including he would want when he's not getting accurate and complete information, he's at the mercy of what amounts to fantastic PR moves by BP in order to make Obama and the gov't look ridiculous, and don't look now, it's working. Who's the bad guy here, your President, or BP?

    May 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm |
  7. Evelyn, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

    Why not have large circles of floating plastic pipe on the surface (with holes) that connects to a vacuum-like system to suck up the oil on the surface? This seems easy enough to rig up and would coral the oil like booms but at the same time suck it up. I sent this idea to BP as well but of course have not heard anything back.

    May 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm |
  8. Mark Weiss

    James Carville needs to change his message..... the lack of response to the oil disaster is not a personal affront to his culture and way of life. This is about much more ...it's a frightening look at our entire American culture and how we may be witnessing the extinction of the Gulf of Mexico ......and possibly a lot more.

    Mark
    Philadelphia, PA

    May 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm |
  9. Cat

    Watch your show every night, love how you invited BP on again and promised not to bite them!

    May 28, 2010 at 11:13 pm |
  10. Evelyn, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

    What is being done with all the plastic bags full of oil? Will they be burned? Will they be buried in landfills to seep into groundwater supplied? Has anyone asked this question yet?

    May 28, 2010 at 11:13 pm |
  11. Ric

    The pres. Just got sucker. Hey B.P. is smart

    May 28, 2010 at 11:13 pm |
  12. Riley Park

    Back in our grandparents days the gulf would be covered with a flotilla of clean up vessels and BP would be footing everyone's bill without so much as a question. Corporate ethics have taken a back seat to corpoarate profit. We are watching it take place daily, interest and profit gained via the destruction of our environment. This is not an American disaster it's a global tragedy.

    Our government seems to be a bystander. I used to ask my Dad to make sure there was no boggy man under my bed at bedtime when I was a child. The White House reminds me of my childhood, except they are the adults and need to deal with the BP boggy man as frightening as that may be.

    May 28, 2010 at 11:12 pm |
  13. Al Baton Rouge

    Good Job Obama! Picked up one teaspoon sized Tar Ball. 768 teaspoons per gallon so only 15 to 30 Billion to go!

    James carville got it right last night- what a show!

    May 28, 2010 at 11:10 pm |
  14. Liz Carter in Georgia

    I really feel sympathy for the OYSTERMEN AND THE OYSTERS; the SHRIMPERS AND THE SHRIMP; all of the animals, fish, reptiles, and birds. The people are out of work as the oil is kills the bounty. GREED IS ALWAYS GOING TO BE THIS NATIONS DOWNFALL AND THAT IS THE BOTTOMLINE TO THE TROUBLE THAT WE HAVE ENCOUNTERED RECENTLY! GOD doesn't like ugly and HE will let us know that when we get to HIGH on ourselves, one way or the other. IDOLATORS and HIPPOCRITES are going to BE PUNISHED, EVEN IF OTHERS HAVE TO SUFFER!

    May 28, 2010 at 11:09 pm |
  15. Joe

    Go James c

    May 28, 2010 at 10:56 pm |
  16. linda

    Thank you for the great coverage.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:52 pm |
  17. Robert DeLong New zealand

    12 years ago I saw the writing on the wall. This exactly what a society htat lusts for money brings on themselves. The US is so dependent on oil that nothing will come from a disaster so immense that it should put the nail in fossil fuel dependency and monies should pour into alternate energy. What BP, Halliburton, the deregulations put in place by the Bush administration and the politicians in the big oil pockets have done to the Gulf Coast, the 29th largest economy in the world, is not just a disaster it is a tragedy for everyone. Not just the poor fishermen and the local economy but the rest of the US and the world. never will I buy BP again. Shame in the most extreme should befall BP.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:42 pm |
  18. norman johnson

    with the hurricane season approaching, is there a contingency plan in place if a tropical storm or hurricane enters the gulf and the oil is not capped.
    norman johnson, pontiac, michigan

    May 28, 2010 at 10:40 pm |
  19. Martin

    James Carville keep up the pressure... your doing what's required. Stay strong and keep your energy going man...

    May 28, 2010 at 10:39 pm |
  20. Karoline, Los Angeles

    Hurricane season does worry me. What happens when the crude and the dispersantd are blown by the wind on to all kinds of inland plants, animals and humans?

    I'm disappointed in how the administration is handling this.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:37 pm |
  21. MIKE MINGS

    WATCHING THE DAYS EVENTS HAVE BROUGHT SOME QUESTIONS. THE COASTAL AREAS ARE PART OF THE U.S., THEREFORE I BELIEVE THAT PRES. OBAMA SHOULD BE DOING ALL THINGS NECESSARY TO RECTIFY THIS PROBLEM! AFTER THE LEAK IS STOPPED THEN WE CAN CLEAN THINGS UP. AT THAT POINT THE U.S. CAN BILL BP AND THE CONTRACTED DRILLING COMPANY FOR THE COST.
    WATCHING THE DAY LABORERS HIRED APPARENTLY BY BP TO WORK FOR ONE DAY? THIS AT FIRST I THOUGHT WAS A SHOW PUT ON FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND PROBABLY ORCHASTRATED BY OUR OWN GOVT. BUT WATCHING TH RESPONSE ON YOU SHOW BY THE BP OFFICIAL MAKES ME AWARE IT WAS BY BP.
    CLEANING THE SHORE, WHICH WOULD TAKE MORE LIKE 30,000 PEOPLE, IS A WASTE OF TIME. GO BACK TO THE SAME LOCATION IN THE MORNING AND THERE WILL BE MORE OIL ON THE BEACH!

    STOP THE LEAK FIRST AND THEN LETS CLEAN UP..

    WE HAVE VAST RESERVES ON LAND THAT COULD BE TAPPED. IF A LEAK OF THIS NATURE HAPPENED ON LAND IT COULD BE BURNED OFF UNTILL READY TO SNUFF IT OUT AND CAP THE WELL. CLEANING THE LAND WOULD BE EASIER AND COST LESS AND BE COMPLETED WITH IN THIRTY DAYS !

    May 28, 2010 at 10:32 pm |
  22. Karoline, Los Angeles

    Carville is right. I was just thinking the same thing.

    If this had happened in Malibu or Santa Monica where the Democrats have a lot of wealthy and influential friends, there would be tankers out there sucking up the oil and water 30 days ago.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:30 pm |
  23. Karoline, Los Angeles

    I agree with Brinkley. BP has been manipulating the whole thing from the very start. Sometimes I feel like the government is covering for them.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:28 pm |
  24. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Why is that everybody, especially the MEDIA so BENT on showing and reporting the PRESIDENT and his administration as LACKING? The president went to the gulf for the second time to give them his PROMISE of support for as long as it takes, and to actually put his own hands on some of the problems! Now what else do they want him to do. He spent more time there than BUSH did there after KATRINA! DO YOU FOLK EXPECT HIM TO GET OUT THERE PERSONALLY IN BOOTS AND A RUBBER SUIT WITH THE OTHERS? MY GOODNESS!

    May 28, 2010 at 10:25 pm |
  25. James Spencer, Portland, OR

    Anderson, could you comment to the fact that BP on their own website states they have 22,000 people deployed there and over 1,100 vessels? But they hire a bunch of people yesterdsay, bus them in, but they are suppose to already have 22,000 there already? Their staging locations are on a BP map on their website. Can we get pictures as to how many people are out there or are they not allowing this much like no media in small planes taking pictures?

    Sounds like a huge cover up! Lastly, we must address that Obama received $880,000 in campaign funds in 2008 from oil concerns.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:25 pm |
  26. frankie

    BP lies constantly even though they are not very good at it. Today the man from BP said that the hundreds of people left the beach because they work long days in the sun and it was "late afternoon." How stupid does BP think we are? 2:30 p.m. when President Obama spoke is not "late afternoon." They pretended not to know that everyone thought they were pouring mud into the well while they were stopped for 16 hours. They have not answered one question directly as far as I'm concerned. They are obsessed with having the last word and never being wrong and they have never "mis-spoken" even accidentally. I'm just stunned that they can talk like that on TV.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  27. Lisa Howard (St. Bernard, Louisiana)

    All I can say is THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!!!!! My husband is a commerical fishermen and everyday he goes to the docks looking for work and he is told that they don't need anymore people for the day. Although on the work list it shows that they may need for instance seven big boats that day and only four big boats show up, he is told to go home cause they are not taking anymore boats for that day. Since this oil spill has taken place this weekend will be the second time that he is on the work list. They are being told that they have to wait 21 days before they can work again. While there are others who work every single day!

    May 28, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  28. Anne C Thomas

    BP will not come on your show because they have lied over and over. Short and sweet: They are Cowards! Watch the tape of the Morning show and see the CEO squirm when John Robert's extends an invitation for your show to him. They are pitiful. Stupid , stupid people who think because of their wealth they are above common moral standards. they still think they can run, hide and lie their way out of this situation. It is a unfunny comedy of errors!

    May 28, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  29. Karoline, Los Angeles

    Good for Carville. He knows how Washington has a tendency to forget about people.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  30. Eddie

    What is the Governor doing, we blamed Blanco and Naquin during Katrina. I've heard Jindal doing a lot of talking but wheres the action from the state.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  31. Nice Beach

    That beach looks great. Apart from the offshore oil rigs. But where are all the condos? In Mississippi and Alabama the beaches all have condos behind them. Where are the condos and casinos. Can only mean the beaches are not so great as Billy Nungesser says. Keep it honest tell us the truth???

    May 28, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
  32. Jerry Todd

    Why are these fishermen blaming Pres Obama? The majority of them vote Republican, the party we can without a doubt blame on lax regulations on offshore drilling. The fishermen and their families have all been in bed with the oilmen and shouted "drill baby drill"...they were warned over and over by liberals that an accident was waiting to happen but they knew better and us liberals were just against capitalism...etc...etc....etc...etc... I hate they and we all are being faced with this tragedy. And I hope they will now vote a party that believes in checks and balances. And yes ...this is political...

    May 28, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
  33. Karoline, Los Angeles

    Well, President Obama said these parish presidents could contact him directly if they aren't happy with the clean-up activities. Please ask the parish leaders if they will be calling Obama over the dog-and-pony show.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
  34. wendy hauman pensacola florida

    After attending a four hour training on oil spill clean up, I find it interesting that of the hundreds of workers that were present during the president's visit, none had their Tyvek suits duct taped to their boots. That's oil spill clean-up 101!

    May 28, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  35. Jim

    I would not be surprised if BP shuts off the video feed for the weekend while they remove the cap and the real spill is happening, when they cut that pipe, they will release 10 times the flow.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:12 pm |
  36. gerry

    IT IS TIME FOR AMERICA TO BOYCOTT BP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 28, 2010 at 10:11 pm |
  37. LSM

    It is amazing that BP has workers 24/7 on the rigs while drilling to
    MAKE money but cannot have shift workers on hand to clean up the mess on the beaches and marshes.
    If facial expressions mean anything, the COO shifted his eyes downward when asked the question by the CNN reporter regarding the workers on the beaches prior to the Presindents visit.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  38. michaela

    No one covers a disaster better than you do, Anderson. I've been glued to your show! Keep up the excellent journalism.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:10 pm |
  39. Anne Adams

    How do you know it's not the President or the White House PR machine that staged the workers there?

    May 28, 2010 at 10:08 pm |
  40. Karoline, Los Angeles

    So glad CNN is reporting this sham tonight.

    May 28, 2010 at 10:06 pm |
  41. lj

    what makes anyone think that the federal government did not orchestrate the extra clean up crew specifically for the cameras?

    May 28, 2010 at 10:04 pm |
  42. Cedric Raymond

    You have to be kidding. BP and the President were in a no win position. As for me, I would rather have Oboma remember as the one one who showed Louis. what can be, what will be.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:50 pm |
  43. Mary

    Are we really surprised. That is a perfect example of their ability to spin this tragedy. I hope that Pres. Obama didn't fall for it. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of those who are suffering because BP wanted to make a few extra bucks.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:50 pm |
  44. Tammy, Houma,LA

    No shocker. I wish they could minimize the drama, do what they need to do to get this under control and cleaned up, and go away. I'm sick of watching our state being lied to and being a political pawn. Livelihoods and lives are at stake. The powers that be really need to get a grip, be held accountable, and stop playing with us.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:46 pm |
  45. Annie Kate

    No surprise that BP put workers where the President would be and then withdraw them after Obama left. Are the BP workers doing anything at all on cleaning up the oil from the wetlands and helping with affected wildlife? From all the footage I've seen I just see locals trying to clean up. I'm surprised that the oysters are still good – I wonder how much longer that will last and if there is anything that the fishermen can do to protect those beds from the oil getting in them? The coverage from the Gulf on this is great – keep it up and thank you for showing what a big mess this is.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:46 pm |
  46. lori trottier

    Hey Anderson, Ed,Tom, 360 and Everyone! Sounds like the drillers and the regulators are running for cover.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:44 pm |
  47. DAVE VINCENT

    Looking ahead with the number of hurricanes forecast for this year I contacted my insurance company to see if we were covered for anything that might come up out of the ocean from the BP oil spill. My company is a major playor here in Florida and I live right on the central wetsern Gulf Coast over looking the ocean.
    His response to me was "GOD HELP US ALL IF WE GET ONE!" and I was told we most likely NOT be covered for any oil related damages because it was not part of the hurricane coverage and was man made.
    Has anyone looked that far ahead?

    May 28, 2010 at 9:38 pm |
  48. James Spencer, Portland, OR

    Where are the 22,000 personnel deployed and the 1,100 vessels on site that BP mentions on their website?? Can you please show us on a detail map where the 17 BP staging areas are that they state are protecting the shoreline?

    22,000 personnel
    1,100 vessels on site
    17 staging areas to protect the shoreline

    Where are these assets? ANDERSON, please ask where these 3 sets of assets are, that are stated on "Gulf of Mexico Response tab on BP's Website.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:38 pm |
  49. Robert Bustamante

    Whatever scandalous act BP commits doesn't surprise me. Nor would it surprise me to know if Mr Jindal or other prominent Louisianan's owned BP stock. Americans love big gas guzzlers, oil, coal, fossil fuels. Maybe you should be defending BP. What do you drive? How did you get around the coast today?

    May 28, 2010 at 9:32 pm |
  50. Heather (Qc)

    If you follow the social networking feed of some of the reporters covering the spill from the region, accusations of clean-up activitiy going from 0 to 60 in regions where the President is scheduled to appear have been appearing regularly for the past few days.

    May 28, 2010 at 9:24 pm |
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