Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom was one of numerous state and national Democrats to tee off on U.S Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke this morning for his decision to exempt offshore drilling in the vacation state of Florida—while failing to extend the same exemption to blue states with big tourist economies of their own.
Florida is led by a Republican governor, Rick Scott, who supported Donald Trump for president in 2016. The president spends significant time in the state, playing golf at Mar-al-Lago, a resort that boasts views of the Atlantic Ocean.
Zinke cited the impact on Florida’s tourism industry as the signal driver behind his decision to keep the drilling rigs from view of beachgoers and vacationers. The secretary did not, however, extend the same courtesy to other states with a robust tourist economy—Oregon, New York, Virginia, and of course, California.
Early on Wednesday, Newsom punched out a couple of tweets directed at Zinke that appeared to highlight that the Interior Secretary is a flaming partisan hypocrite hell-bent on fulfilling the Trump mandate to punish blue states, regardless of the appearance of flaming partisan hypocrisy.
Florida, noted Newsom, had 113 million visitors in 2016, while California had 269 million statewide visitor trips. Tourists in Florida spent $109 billion; in California, they spent $126.3 billion.
“Using this logic,” tweeted Newsom, “CA’s coast should be declared free of offshore drilling as well. Or do blue states not get exemptions?”
The Trump Administration has also been busily undoing regulations enacted under President Barack Obama in the aftermath of the catastrophic BP Deepwater Horizon rig off the coast of Louisiana in 2010.