Since the tragic oil spill in the Gulf, President Obama has taken a risky step in the right direction for the nation's energy future.

Make that 27 risky steps.

Sure, his supporters will attempt to hammer him for it, and the reality of taking the necessary action has made his Interior Secretary Ken Salazar look foolish and out of the loop, but none of this should negate the good that will come of President Obama's pro-drilling actions.

To be specific, since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded on April 20, the administration has granted oil and gas companies 27 exemptions from doing in-depth environmental studies of oil exploration in the Gulf of Mexico.

After the disaster the president assured some that there was an immediate moratorium on any off-shore drilling. At least that's what his supporters thought they heard him say. What the president specifically promised was a "relentless response effort to stop the leak and prevent more damage to the Gulf."

Fortunately even Obama's Interior Department believes that further exploration and even drilling can occur safely and that as tragic as April 20 was, it must not be allowed to be the end of our search for energy independence (especially in our waters, off our shores, in our territories.)

Which is exactly what our position should be!

It makes no sense to retreat into an imaginary cave believing that all drilling efforts will result in similar results to what we are facing presently in the Gulf. In recent years we have been increasingly apprised of our own natural energy resources, those that fall within our own control. It is actually a sign of irresponsibility for an administration to not leverage every available resource to uncap those stores and to remove the pressure of our relationships with Islamic tyrants who profit from our purchase of oil from the Middle East.

Already the opposition to the president's decision to issue the 27 exemptions is reaching fevered insanity. Peter Galvin, of the Center for Biological Diversity is complaining, "Is there a moratorium on off shore drilling or not? Possibly the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history has occurred and nothing appears to have changed."

Actually Mr. Galvin you're mistaken, something has happened, something responsible and good for America--the extension of our energy exploration to give us greater security, lower energy costs, and an overall sense of well being for our citizens.

Galvin went further, "It looks to me like they're misleading the public."

Yet, Mr. Galvin it is the Department of the Interior who has granted the exemptions, and revealed to the media that they've done so. How is that misleading?

Everyone in the nation expected the environmental extremists to harp on the oil spill as a reason to stop safe exploration for energy.

Fortunately, and you know how rarely I find myself in this position, I am supporting President Obama for having the clarity to do the right thing and to keep the commitment and search for domestic energy sources alive.

Come to think of it, make that 27 right things.

Kevin McCullough is the nationally syndicated host of "'Baldwin/McCullough Radio"  now heard on 213 stations and columnist based in New York. He blogs at www.muscleheadrevolution.comHis second book "The Kind Of MAN Every Man SHOULD Be is in stores now. And host of "The Kevin McCullough Show" weekdays 7a-9am EST on Sirius 161/XM 227.

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