Tag Archives: Ban

Obama then and now: Opens Offshore Areas to Oil Drilling for First Time

cross-posted from T-Time

Then: “When I’m president, I intend to keep in place the moratorium here in Florida and around the country that prevents oil companies from drilling off Florida’s coasts,” Obama told reporters in Jacksonville in late June. “That’s how we can protect our coastline and still make the investments that will reduce our dependence on foreign oil and bring down gas prices for good.” Candidate Obama 2008

Now: This announcement is part of a broader strategy that will move us from an economy that runs on fossil fuels and foreign oil to one that relies more on homegrown fuels and clean energy. And the only way this transition will succeed is if it strengthens our economy in the short term and long term.

He added: “To fail to recognize this reality would be a mistake.” (today’s announcement)


Obama to allow gas and oil drilling off Virginia coast

President Obama is set to announce that he will allow oil and gas drilling 50 miles off Virginia’s coast, including a possible sale two years from now of leases off the state’s shores.

The decision, which Obama will announce with Interior Secretary Ken Salazar at Andrews Air Force Base this morning, ends a long-standing ban on drilling along much of the East Coast, from Delaware to central Florida.

Obama’s move will represent a victory for Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, who campaigned last year on making the state the “Energy Capital of the East Coast” and using proceeds from drilling to pay for transportation. (Congress would still need to pass a bill allowing Virginia to receive royalties.)

Most Virginia leaders — regardless of political party — have expressed interest in drilling for oil and natural gas, including both U.S. Sens. Jim Webb and Mark. Warner and most members of the state’s congressional delegation.

But environmental groups and some Democratic members of Congress, including U.S. Reps. James P. Moran Jr. of Northern Virginia and Robert C. Scott of Hampton Roads, say they worry that possible spills and new infrastructure onshore and off could harm plants, animals, tourism and the naval base in Norfolk, the world’s largest.

more here: Washington Post

and here:  Obama proposes opening Alaska coastal areas to offshore drilling


Replay: President Obama Speaks on “Energy Security”

March 31, 2010 11:05 AM EDT

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President Obama Lifts HIV/Aids Immigration Ban

Posted by Audiegrl

The US has lifted a 22-year immigration ban which has stopped anyone with HIV/Aids from entering the country

BBC News—President Obama said the ban was not compatible with US plans to be a leader in the fight against the disease.

The new rules come into force on Monday and the US plans to host a bi-annual global HIV/Aids summit for the first time in 2012.

The ban was imposed at the height of a global panic about the disease at the end of the 1980s.

It put the US in a group of just 12 countries, also including Libya and Saudi Arabia, that excluded anyone suffering from HIV/Aids.

The BBC’s Charles Scanlon, in Miami, says that improving treatments and evolving public perceptions have helped to bring about the change.

Rachel Tiven, head of the campaign group Immigration Equality, told the BBC that the step was long overdue.

President Barack Obama announced his plan to lift the ban while signing the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act of 2009

The 2012 World Aids Conference, due to be held in the United States, was in jeopardy as a result of the restrictions. It’s now likely to go ahead as planned,” she said.

In October, President Obama said the entry ban had been “rooted in fear rather than fact”.

He said: “We lead the world when it comes to helping stem the Aids pandemic – yet we are one of only a dozen countries that still bar people with HIV from entering our own country.”

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Filed under AIDS/HIV, Barack Obama, Change, Health, History, Immigration, Law, Politics, Pres. Barack Obama, Presidents, Uncategorized, United States

Texas Judge Rules Gay-Marriage Ban Violates U.S. Constitution

Posted by Audiegrl

PORTUGAL-GAY-MARRIAGEAssociated Press/Matt Curry—A Texas judge cleared the way for two Dallas men to get a divorce, ruling Thursday that Texas’ ban on same-sex marriage violates the constitutional guarantee to equal protection under the law.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said he’d appeal the ruling, which he labeled an attempt to strike down the ban approved by voters in 2005.

“The laws and constitution of the State of Texas define marriage as an institution involving one man and one woman,” Abbott said in a written statement. “Today’s ruling purports to strike down that constitutional definition — despite the fact that it was recently adopted by 75 percent of Texas voters.”

Abbott has argued that because the state doesn’t recognize gay marriage, its courts can’t dissolve one through divorce.

District Judge Tena Callahan’s ruled Thursday, however, that the court “has jurisdiction to hear a suit for divorce filed by persons legally married in another jurisdiction.”

Jennifer Pizer, marriage project director for the New York-based gay rights group Lambda Legal, said it is too early to predict the ultimate implications of the lawsuit, in which neither man is identified.

But Cathy Adams, president of the conservative Texas Eagle Forum, characterized the decision as a judicial overreach.

“Judicial activism is what they’re after, and it sounds as if they found someone in Dallas to participate in their endeavor,” she said. “The people of Texas have spoken very strongly in opposition to same-sex marriage.”

Peter Schulte, an attorney for the man who filed for divorce, told The Dallas Morning News that he and his client are “ecstatic” over the court’s ruling. Schulte said the decision was a surprise, and that he hoped to have the judge sign a divorce order in a few weeks.

More @ Associated Press

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Filed under Culture, Gay (LGBT) Rights, Law, Supreme Court, Uncategorized