The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Inspector General: Obama Administration Edited BP Oil Spill Report to Falsely Suggest Consensus for Gulf Drilling Ban

Posted on | November 10, 2010 | 1 Comment

The administration’s six-month moratorium on deep-water drilling in the Gulf of Mexico wasn’t “peer reviewed” at all. No, it was an executive decision by President Obama, and the report was then edited — apparently by a staffer for Carol Browner — to make it look like experts had “peer reviewed” that recommendation.

The experts had complained in June about the report’s false implication that they supported the drilling moratorium. The administration’s editing of the report moved a passage containing the peer-review language from page two — where it followed the expert panel’s list of 22 specific safety recommendations — to page one, immediately after the drilling moratorium.

This editing had the effect of lending the prestige of “science” to the administration’s policy. Ed Morrissey:

 The White House version of the report gave Obama political cover to order the six-month moratorium — at least until those involved in its peer review cried foul after the White House publicly used them to defend the action.

Ed asks some relevant questions:

Why was the staff of energy “adviser” Carol Browner allowed to edit a report issued by the Department of Interior’s blue-ribbon panel in the first place?  Why did no one review those changes at Interior to determine whether the edits were justified, especially since the IG report indicates that the edits took place because the staffer or Browner didn’t think it summarized the findings properly?  Why not just ask the report’s authors to rewrite it themselves?

More relevant questions: Why should we give the Obama administration the benefit of the doubt here? Why not just demagogue this the way the Left demagogued Bush over the failure to find WMD stockpiles in Iraq?


Vicki McClure Davidson did an excellent roundup on the Gulf drilling moratorium in June.


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