WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says federal regulators under his watch should have shown a "greater sense of urgency" about tightening oversight of oil and gas.
Obama says a moratorium on new deepwater oil wells is the first of many steps that will be taken to improve oversight of the industry. He credits Interior Secretary Ken Salazar for many reforms, but says "more needs to be done."
Obama says some proposed drilling lease sales off the coasts of Alaska and Virginia and the Gulf Coast will be delayed or canceled.
At a news conference Thursday, he described what he called a "scandalously close relationship" between regulators and oil companies and said that must be stopped. He said he has confidence Salazar can do that.