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Posts Tagged ‘Bobby Jindal’

BP Tries to Come Clean on Gulf Oil Spill Anniversary

Photo: Gerald Herbert/AP

Today is the one year anniversary of the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig, which caused the deaths of 11 people and the largest oil spill in U.S. history. BP and its CEO Bob Dudley have used the anniversary to speak to the developments over the past year and to express the company’s ongoing regret over the spill.

The BP homepage has a message from Dudley front and center, with a longer column written by the chief exec published in today’s Wall Street Journal that talks about the funding BP has chipped in to correct the problems caused by the spill, increased safety measures implemented, and new experts that have been brought on board to ensure that an accident doesn’t happen again. A video on the BP site also discusses what has happened over the past year.

We recently reported that BP’s reputation, while still pretty bad, appears to be on the upswing. BP’s efforts may deserve part of the credit. But other forces seem to be aiding the oil giant in its reputation recovery.

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Gibbs On BP: We’ll ‘Keep the Boot On Their Throat’

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[President Obama with U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Thad Allen and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal aboard Marine One yesterday.]

As the massive Gulf Coast oil spill continues to get worse, British Petroleum (BP), is “coming under mounting pressure,” The Wall Street Journal reports. Since the accident, BP’s stock market value has declined by roughly $25 billion, the AP reports, and the clean up will cost billions and could take years.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs was asked yesterday about President Obama’s approach to BP. “I point you to what [Interior] Secretary Salazar said about — I think the phrase was — at least the phrase I heard earlier in the week with him was to keep the boot on their throat. So I think that kind of sums up in that Western Colorado way how — what we’re trying to convey.”

The company, which has done much to put forth a “green” image, insofar as changing its logo to green and yellow and its tag line to “beyond petroleum,” has also invested hundreds of millions in to alternative energy research. Those efforts mean little now, as the company faces its biggest challenge yet.

Political PR Players Debate State of the Union

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Powerhouse D.C.-based public relations firm Qorvis Communications hosted a conference call this morning to review and analyze President Obama’s State of The Union address, which he delivered last night.

Qorvis partner and former Policy and Communications Director for U.S. Senator Mary L. Landrieu (D-LA) Rich Masters said the speech was “closer to what Ronald Reagan wanted to do” when he had to turn around low poll approval numbers after his first year in office. Reagan’s State of The Union after his first year “was more combative,” he said.

In comparison, “Clinton, in his first year came out and said, ‘We screwed up, we have to recalibrate,’ and then took smaller bites at the larger ideas they had.”

When evaluating the administration’s communications team, Masters said, “I think Gibbs and his team did a good job.”

“The Obama White House understands that communications has really changed. A vast majority of people didn’t view this speech, but a lot of them will watch coverage and even more will find it online. By 10 p.m. last night, individual sound clips were taken out and pushed out in social media. If the only policy you care about in middle America is energy, you can find what President said on energy.”

However, Masters also had praise for the GOP, saying that they “did a much better job this year compared to last year in their communications strategy.” The Republican rebuttal was presented by newly-elected Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell. Last year of course was the disastrous rebuttal by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

Karen Hanretty, managing director at Qorvis and former Communications Director at the National Republican Congressional Committee said the President’s speech “didn’t give you a lot to hold onto” if you are a moderate Democrat. This group “needs to distance themselves from the President and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi,” she said.

Hanretty also wasn’t impressed by the PR roll-out. “The President gives speeches all the time,” she said. Adding, “this wasn’t a difficult speech.”

In regards to McDonnell’s rebuttal, Hanretty said he was a “rock star” and “the right guy to have out there.”