Republicans put taxpayers ‘on hook’ for oil damage, Obama says

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Senate Republicans threaten to leave taxpayers “on the hook” for damages from the BP Plc spill in the Gulf of Mexico by blocking legislation to raise the liability limit, President Barack Obama said.

“This maneuver threatens to leave taxpayers, rather than the oil companies, on the hook for future disasters like the BP oil spill,” Obama said yesterday in a statement. “I urge the Senate Republicans to stop playing special-interest politics and join in a bipartisan effort to protect taxpayers and demand accountability from the oil companies.”

A Democratic bid to pass a bill raising liability to $10 billion from $75 million was blocked yesterday by Republican Senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma. Inhofe said a higher limit would make it impossible for independent producers to drill in the Gulf, where they account for 63 percent of natural-gas production and 36 percent of oil pumped from wells.

Full story: Republicans Put Taxpayers ‘On Hook’ for Oil Damage, Obama Says – Bloomberg.com