Gov. Bobby Jindal's message has been loud and clear, using language such as "We will only be winning this war when we're actually deploying every resource," "They (the federal government) can provide more resources" and "It's clear the resources needed to protect our coast are still not here."
But nearly two months after the governor requested - and the Department of Defense approved the use of 6,000 Louisiana National Guard troops - only a fraction - 1,053 - have actually been deployed by Jindal to fight the spill.
"If you ask any Louisianan, if you said 'If you had those troops, do you think they could be put to good use? Is there anything they can do in your parish?' I think they'd all tell you 'Absolutely,'" Louisiana state Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, said.
But CBS News has learned that in addition to Louisiana's 1,053 troops of 6,000, Alabama has deployed 432 troops of 3,000 available. Even fewer have been deployed in Florida - 97 troops out of 2,500 - and Mississippi - 58 troops out of 6,000.
Those figures prompted President Obama to weigh in.
"I urge the governors in the affected states to activate these troops as soon as possible," Mr. Obama said.
It's believed officials in Alabama, Florida and Mississippi and are reluctant to use more troops because their presence could hurt tourism. In hardest-hit Louisiana, however, Jindal is pointing fingers.
"Actually we asked the White House to approve the initial 6,000," Jindal said. "What they came back and said is the Coast Guard and BP had to authorize individual tasks."
But Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, the national incident commander in charge of the government's response to the spill, said Jindal is just flat wrong.
"There is nothing standing in the governor's way from utilizing more National Guard troops," Allen said.
Jindal Not Using National Guard That Is Available & Waiting
Now someone needs to explain to the people of Louisiana that the blame for not getting more help doesn't lay at the feet of the Obama administration, but rather at the feet of those who have the authority to access more help but are not doing so.
Apparently it is more important for Bobby Jindal to stand in front of the cameras and complain about the lack of help from the Obama administration than it is to acknowledge publicly that the Obama administration has authorized the Governor's of the Gulf States to use the National Guard.
What is the reason for this? How can this be acceptable? Politic's instead of the interest in his state seems to be the idea behind Jindal's behavior. What other explanation is there? You have the authority to call upon over a thousand more people to help with the crisis, and yet you just don't. Yet you are on television complaining about the lack of help available.
This is not the only problem with Bobby Jindal that is coming to light.
Jindal vetoes bill to open oil spill records
Gov. Bobby Jindal rejected a bill Friday that would have required him to make public and to preserve all his office's documents involving the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
In his veto letter, the governor said the legislation would have hurt the state's position in future litigation against BP PLC, the oil giant that leased the rig which exploded April 20 in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers and causing the disaster.
"This bill would allow BP and other parties with potential liability to the state to obtain information retained by any state agency responding to this tragic event," Jindal wrote, saying such access could jeopardize the state's position in seeking legal remedy for the spill's damage.
The Senate sponsor of the public records provision said Friday night that Jindal's veto was expected. He noted that the governor has repeatedly fought attempts to require preservation and open most of his office's records to public scrutiny.
"This governor has opposed transparency for the three years he's been in office, so that's not a surprise. What is sad about all this is it's just another black eye on Louisiana internationally now," said Sen. Robert Adley, R-Benton.
Adley also called it hypocritical for the governor to push BP to open some of its records to the state even as Jindal refuses to release his own.
"How in the world would making our records public let BP off for what they've done? That makes absolutely no sense," Adley said.
Jindal has said he wants BP to open its claims database to the state to help ensure payments are being processed promptly.Jindal Wants BP to Open Its Records But Refuses To Do The Same For Government
Now what is the reason for his refusal to not only open up the records, but to preserve them in the case of the deepwater spill? What is he hiding? Is he worried about his performance? Is he hiding something that would show just how poor of a job he has been doing with regards to this spill? Or maybe he is hiding the fact that he is screwing over his state because he is pushing a political agenda. The fact remains that he wants BP to open its records but is unwilling to do the same. Now if BP refused to do so, what do you think the reaction would be by Bobby Jindal? He would be screaming to the rooftops.
Now another question that should be asked is what did Bobby Jindal know and when did he know it about the tasks that are taking place down on the barrier islands that has caused the Federal Government to stop the dredging and the building of berms after initially giving approval to build them.
We know that Jindal was screaming for approval of the plan to start building the berms and was getting stonewalled by the Army Corps of Engineers, because they felt the plan was not worth pursuing. The reason given was that the sand being taken to build the berms was from a limited resource that once used could not be recovered, not to mention the fact that the berms, as designed would not be able to withstand the weather in the Gulf during hurricane season. It has been suggested that even a mild hurricane would wash away the berms leaving the barrier island vulnerable once again, and all the money and resources used to build those berms would be wasted. Then there was the concerns that the berms could actually cause as much damage as the oil, if not more.
Among the problems cited by one or more of those agencies: that the emergency berms would take several months to build, by which time a lot of oil would have hit the coast; that dredging up the sand to build the berms could intensify coastal erosion and rip apart undersea oil-and-gas pipelines; and that the berms, by changing the flow of water, could alter the water's salinity, potentially hurting fish.
In response, Louisiana officials changed some of the areas where they proposed to dredge the sand for the emergency berms, nixing areas that federal officials called particularly ecologically sensitive.
Louisiana's congressional delegation was pushing hard for the plan. "We implore you to immediately approve" the plan, the delegation wrote Col. Al Lee, the head of the Corps' New Orleans office, and Adm. Allen, on May 20. They noted that "heavy oil is now coating our marshes."
In written comments May 26 to the Corps of Engineers, the EPA said the berms would be "unlikely to stop the majority of the oil from migrating inland," because they would leave many large water passes open.
Furthermore, the EPA said in its comments, the construction of the oil-blocking berms "could exacerbate the emergency situation in the Gulf," in part because it could move around sand on the sea floor that already had been contaminated with oil, newly endangering aquatic life.Berms Being Built But Doubts Persist
So, the berms were given the tentative okay, and they were started but then something changed.
Washington Slows Down Sand Berms in Louisiana
Federal authorities have put a temporary stop to a $360 million project to build massive sand berms—a plan Nungesser championed for weeks—that are meant to block the flow of oil into the marshes and wetlands in southeastern Louisiana. Interior Department officials—who were slow to approve the project and had doubts about it—have ordered Louisiana to stop dredging sand from the sensitive Chandeleur Islands:
[Louisiana Gov. Bobby] Jindal and Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser said federal authorities want the state to move a dredging site farther from the Chandeleur Islands, a sensitive chain of barrier islands.
However, the Interior Department said the order was issued because the state was pumping sand from a sensitive section of the island chain and had failed to meet an extended deadline to install pipe that would tap sand from a less-endangered area.
The worry is that by pumping sand from the Chandeleurs—a chain of barrier islands east of the Mississippi River, and one of the first spots to be hit by oil—the berm project could damage the islands themselves, which form a vital natural defense against storm surges and hurricanes. The Interior Department says that Louisiana had promised to build a pipe that could bring in sand from outside the islands, but had failed to do so by an extended deadline—hence the order to stop.
Washington Puts The Brakes On Sand Berm Project
So, it would seem that in trying to do something, anything, to make themselves look like they are taking action, the long term destruction of the Chandeleurs means less than the somewhat instant and short-lived gratification that these sand berms would provide.