In a recent interview with National Journal, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Ct.) not only defended offshore oil drilling, but also sought to downplay the current Gulf coast crisis, saying "accidents happen."
"There were good reasons for us to put in offshore drilling, and this terrible accident is very rare in drilling," Lieberman said in the interview. "I mean, accidents happen. You learn from them and you try not to make sure they don't happen again."
According to National Journal, Lieberman also said he would continue pushing for an expansion of offshore drilling to be included in the Senate's energy bill:
When asked whether the spill would change any of the drilling language he and Sens. John Kerry, D-Mass., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., have developed, Lieberman said, "I don't think so; certainly not to lead us to remove it." He said the draft would allow drilling as close as 75 miles from the U.S. coastline.
But Democrats from around the country, and in particular from Gulf Coast states, have said that they will not vote for any energy bill that expands drilling.
Sen. Bill Nelson (D- Fla.) said that the bill was "dead on arrival," and promised to filibuster offshore drilling plans. "Offshore drilling off the coast of the U.S is not going anywhere," he said.
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger also withdrew support for offshore drilling
"You turn on the television and see this enormous disaster, you say to yourself, 'Why would we want to take on that kind of risk?'" Schwarzenegger said.