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Scott Scores a Win as Trump Exempts Florida from Offshore Drilling

Scott Scores a Win as Trump Exempts Florida from Offshore Drilling

Florida Republicans who protested the Trump administration's plan to open almost all coastal waters to drilling cheered a vow from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke that their state would be "off the table" in the new plans going forward. "If Secretary Zinke has really turned over a new leaf and made a decision to listen to local voices, he should listen to the outpouring of opposition coming from communities, businesses, and elected officials from both parties up and down our coasts and promptly withdraw his radical offshore drilling plan", League of Conservation Voters Deputy Legislative Director Alex Taurel said in a Tuesday night statement.

Gov. Rick Scott met with a member of President Donald Trump's administration and struck a deal to remove Florida from a list of states proposed for more offshore oil drilling.

Gov. Henry McMaster of SC, who endorsed Trump in his run for president back in January 2016, said that he did not support the offshore drilling decision. "My top priority is to ensure that Florida's natural resources are protected, which is why I proposed $1.7 billion for the environment in this year's budget". Scott said drilling wouldn't happen in the "foreseeable future.We are not going to drill now.It's not safe".

'New York doesn't want drilling off our coast either, ' New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted Wednesday.

That's something Scott said he's emphasized to Zinke and added that he has adamantly opposed drilling off Florida's shores.

In addition to Florida's Scott, the Republican governors of South Carolina, Maryland, New Hampshire and New Jersey are all against opening the Atlantic to drilling, too, as are the Democratic governors of North Carolina, Delaware and Virginia.

Well, Florida Gov. Rick Scott is a Republican. - Zinke dropped Florida from the drilling map.

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Leaders from other coastal states jumped to shame Interior's decision, noting that Florida, considered an election "swing" state, is the home of Mar-A-Lago, one of Trump's golf resorts and a frequent getaway for the president. For almost a year, Trump has been urging Scott to challenge Democratic Florida Sen.

"By removing Florida from consideration, we can now focus on how we can further protect our environment", Scott said.

Republican members of Congress were also not pleased with the new drilling plans nor with the limited exemption for Florida.

Almost eight years ago, the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded off the Louisiana coast, and the record oil spill that resulted also affected Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas.

"I have spent my entire life fighting to keep oil rigs away from our coasts".

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra used some of Zinke's statement regarding Florida to make his point on Twitter. He wanted to know why the administration made a decision to exclude Florida from its plan for offshore drilling while not also excluding Virginia. "So, yes, closing Florida's coast to oil and gas drilling is a step in the right direction".

The new plan, and Florida's exemption, was blasted by lawmakers of both parties in coastal states.

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