SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) – A familiar face in north Louisiana could soon become a member of the president's newly-formed oil spill commission, designed to examine everything from what caused the spill to offshore drilling safety and regulation.
The chairman of the Louisiana Democratic Party has urged President Obama to appoint Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell to the President's commission on the BP oil spill. Claude "Buddy" Le ace of Lake Charles said Campbell's political independence, advocacy for consumers and unique role in the debate over coastal erosion make him well-suited to serve on the President's commission. "As a former state legislator, Congressman and President and CEO of a company active in oil and gas myself, and as someone who shares Foster's views on the industry, I know he can make an invaluable contribution to the nation's well being as a member of the spill commission," said Leach wrote, "He will be a voice for the people, not the special interests. His nomination will send a signal that you want an unvarnished, fair and independent review of this disaster."
Senator Bob Graham of Florida and former EPA Administrator Bill Reilly were tapped to lead the independent commission last week.
None of the remaining five seats have been named, and there is no guarantee the recommendation will result in an appointment, but Campbell says he is ready and willing to serve. "I know it's important work. He wants a report within six months to really give some policy and procedure, how are we going to let people drill in the Gulf of Mexico, the safety involved. I know I have been a real critic for years about drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. I'm for it, but with strong precautions and strong safety measures, which I don't think we've had."
Campbell recently indicated interest in running for Lieutenant Governor of Louisiana, but today tells KSLA News 12 he believes he could do much more long-term good serving on on the oil spill commission, rather than "going around the state, cutting ribbons."
Campbell served in the Louisiana Senate from 1976 to 2002. He was elected to the Public Service Commission's North Louisiana Seat in 2002 and re-elected in 2008.