The President delivered this week’s address directly from the shores of the Gulf Coast. He stressed his commitment to the people of that area and acknowledged the frustration and uncertainty that has been felt. The President noted,

“Often families have been here for generations, earning a living, and making a life, that’s tied to the water – that’s tied to the magnificent coasts and the natural bounty of this place. Here, this spill has not just damaged livelihoods. It’s upended whole communities. And the fury people feel is not just about the money they’ve lost. They’ve been through tough times before. It’s about the wrenching recognition that this time their lives may never be the same. These folks work hard. They meet their responsibilities. But now because of a manmade catastrophe – one that’s not their fault and beyond their control – their lives have been thrown into turmoil. It’s brutally unfair. It’s wrong. And what I told these men and women – and what I have said since the beginning of this disaster – is that I’m going to stand with the people of the Gulf Coast until they are made whole.”

President Obama also listed the various responses that have been made to address the oil spill. In what he called the “largest response to an environmental disaster of its kind in the history of the country,” President Obama stated that the following initiatives have already taken place:

  • 17,000 National Guard troops have been sent to the area.
  • Over 20,000 people are currently working to protect and clean the coastlines.
  • Hundreds of top scientists and engineers from all over the world have been convened to address the situation.
  • 19,000 vessels have been sent to assist with the cleanup efforts.
  • Over 4.3 million feet of boom has been sent to the coast. 2.9 million feet of boom is still available.
  • And 17 staging areas have been set up to defend sensitive shorelines.

The President also assured the public that efforts are currently being made to recoup some of the financial devastation that has been visited upon the area because of the spill. According to this week’s address, BP has been ordered to pay economic injury claims and has already received a preliminary bill for $69 million to repay taxpayers for some of the expenses that have already taken place. The President also stated that the Small Business Administration is currently doing its part, approving loans and allowing deferments to existing repayment plans.

Finally, President Obama said that new standards for offshore drilling are currently being put in place and reiterated the creation of a bipartisan commission to examine the cause of the oil spill. President Obama made it clear,

“If laws are inadequate – laws will be changed. If oversight was lacking – it will be strengthened. And if laws were broken – those responsible will be brought to justice.”

Here’s this week’s video address:

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