Obama Wildcats for Votes by Shifting Oil Stance | NBC New York

Obama Wildcats for Votes by Shifting Oil Stance

Democratic Candidate Now Thinks Drilling Should Be an Option



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    US Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama addresses a townhall meeting at Brevard Community College in Titusville, Florida near the Kennedy Space Center. AFP PHOTO / Bruce WEAVER (Photo credit should read BRUCE WEAVER/AFP/Getty Images)

    Barack Obama called John McCain's plan to allow offshore drilling for oil a "scheme" last week, but the presumed Democratic nominee now says that offshore drilling should be considered as part of comprehensive energy policy.

    As part of an interview with The Palm Beach Post, Obama shifted his stance on oil prospecting in a move that some are criticizing as being overtly political.

    Public support for offshore drilling is seen as the impetus behind Obama's change of mind.

    Online magazine Slate noted that a recent national poll showed that 57% of Americans were in favor of offshore drilling as a way to reduce gas prices at the pump.

    In addition to drilling, Obama also is in favor of tapping the nation's strategic petroleum reserve and taxing oil company profits that are at historic highs.

    John McCain became a supporter of offshore drilling last year after previously opposing it. Both campaigns are attempting to use the issue as a referendum on how the candidates would lead, with Obama's camp saying that he is open to compromise while McCain boosters claiming that the Republican candidate would address issues decisively.