There may be a silver lining to the Deepwater Horizon debacle.
In the runup to the 2010 Congressional mid-term elections, Democratic support has been flagging. Big Oil just might give the Dems the opportunity to revive their fortunes.
The latest Gallup poll shows Republicans remain unmoved by the Gulf of Mexico fiasco and continue to solidly support domestic energy development over environmental protection by better than two to one. Democrats, by contrast, have gone from 58 to 73% pro-environment and, even more importantly, independents have gone from being slightly pro-energy to solidly pro-environment since the Deepwater Horizon fiasco.
How hard is it going to be for Obama and Congressional Dems to remind American voters that the oil men ran the White House from 2000 to 2008, that none other than Big Oil's patron saint, Dick Cheney, manipulated their nation's energy policy during those critical years? Bang that drum, over and over - Cheney, Big Oil, Deepwater Horizon; Cheney, Big Oil, Deepwater Horizon; Cheney, Big Oil, Deepwater Horizon. Burn it into the voting public's mind so that it remains front and centre when they go to the polls this fall.
In the meantime the Dems should get busy amending their energy legislation to produce an ambitious, alternative energy bill to force the Republicans' hand well prior to the mid-terms. Build a confrontation that will keep Democratic supporters motivated and independent turnout safely on the Democrat's side.