Governor Christie and some of New Jersey’s federal lawmakers want the entire Atlantic Coast excluded from the Trump Administration’s plan to expand offshore oil and gas drilling.
The Interior Department granted a request from Florida officials to exempt that state from offshore drilling because it could devastate its tourism industry and coastal economy.
U.S. Senator Bob Menendez believes New Jersey should also be exempt.
"I think New Jersey deserves the same right. And if it doesn't get the same right, it will be an item to be litigated. How is it that you can make an arbitrary decision to take Florida off and not New Jersey?"
Congressman Frank Pallone says tourism is just as important in New Jersey as it is in Florida.
“The argument about Florida, the tourism being too important, well what happens if a spill occurs off the coast of Savannah or Virginia Beach? It’s going to get to Florida just like it did when the BP spill occurred. So he should take the entire Atlantic Coast out of this.”
Pallone says Florida should not have special status because President Trump is friends with Governor Rick Scott.
“He wants him to run for Senate and so he’s throwing him a bone. And that’s even worse because then it’s just politics.”