"The Obama administration, under heavy pressure from the oil industry and others in the Gulf Coast, on Tuesday lifted the moratorium on deep water drilling that it imposed in the wake of the disastrous BP oil spill.
The six-month ban had been scheduled to expire Nov. 30, but Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said he was moving up that deadline because new rules imposed after the spill have strengthened safety measures and reduced the risk of another catastrophic blowout.
“The policy position that we are articulating today is that we are open for business,” Salazar told a news conference.
The action comes as a federal judge weighed a drilling company’s bid to overturn the moratorium.
It also comes less than a month before midterm elections in which Democrats face widespread criticism for overextending government actions on the economy, including the health care overhaul, the economic stimulus plan and the drilling moratorium."
"Obama Oil-Drilling Decision Could Boost Some Democrats" (McClatchy)
"Deep-Water Drilling Ban Lifted by Salazar" (Bloomberg)
"US Lifts Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Drilling Ban" (AFP)
"President Obama Ends Deep-Water-Drilling Ban" (Politico)
"Most Rig Workers Did Not Seek Relief" (Baton Rouge Advocate)