Democratic strategist and New Orleans resident James Carville is not relenting from his frenzied plea for President Obama to take a more direct and active role in addressing the Gulf oil blowout.
"The President of the United States could've come down here, he could've been involved with the families of these 11 people" who died on the rig after an explosion, Carville said on ABC's Good Morning America. "He could be commandeering tankers and making BP bring tankers in and clean this up. They could be deploying people to the coast right now. He could be with the Corps of Engineers and the Coast Guard...doing something about these regulations. These people are crying, they're begging for something down here, and it just looks like he's not involved in this."
His voice rising, Carville cried out, "Man, you got to get down here and take control of this! Put somebody in charge of this thing and get this moving! We're about to die down here!"
Later, Carville said the administration needs "to launch a criminal investigation -- the Attorney General needs to investigate criminal negligence on the part of BP and what went on at MMS (the Minerals Management Service, the federal agency that regulates offshore drilling). There's a thousand things that he could do. He just needs to get down here and start doing something, people are dying."
The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday that President Obama "is expected to announce on Thursday that the government will impose tougher safety requirements and more rigorous inspections on offshore drilling operations."
The president plans a speech Thursday, after he receives a Department of Interior report on what led to the April 20 explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, which touched off the oil flow. Mr. Obama is expected to detail changes to offshore-drilling permits.
Administration officials say those changes will include new permitting procedures to ensure rig safety. Additional inspections of the rigs will be required, in part to verify that safety features and environmental precautions accepted during the permitting process were in place.
Those regulatory changes are detailed in a 30-day review ordered by the president last month and due on his desk on Thursday. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is expected to reveal many of the review's recommendations during congressional testimony on Wednesday.