On ‘Manmade Catastrophe,’ Obama Says Be ‘Prepared for the Worst’ and Hope for Better News From BP

By MichaelJames

Jun 5, 2010 9:02am

ABC News' Sunlen Miller reports:

Taped from Caminada Bay in Grand Isle, La., on Friday, President Obama warned people in his weekly address to be “prepared for the worst,” even as everyone hopes that BP’s efforts “bring better news than we’ve received before.”

“Over the last few days, BP has placed a cap over the well, and it appears they’re making progress in trying to pump oil to the surface to keep it from leaking into the water,” Obama said in the address, taped from Caminada Bay in Grand Isle, La., on Friday. "But as has been the case since the beginning of this crisis, we are prepared for the worst, even as we hope that BP’s efforts bring better news than we’ve received before.”

The president said that regardless of the outcome of this latest attempt to stem the oil flow, there still will be some spillage until the relief wells are complete and there will continue to be a massive clean up ahead.

“We’ve also ordered BP to pay economic injury claims, and we will make sure they pay every single dime owed to the people along the Gulf Coast,” Obama said. "The federal government sent BP a preliminary bill for $69 million to pay back American taxpayers for some of the costs of the response so far.”

Recalling some of the anecdotes and stories he heard during his Friday spent in the Gulf region, President Obama said that because of this “manmade catastrophe,” people’s lives have been thrown into turmoil.

“It’s brutally unfair.  It’s wrong," the president said. "And what I told these men and women – and what I have said since the beginning of this disaster – is that I’m going to stand with the people of the Gulf Coast until they are made whole.”

-Sunlen Miller

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