Obama to demand BP pay for oil spill damage

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US President Barack Obama, seeking to demonstrate strong leadership on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, will demand on Wednesday that BP set aside billions of dollars to pay damages from the catastrophe.
A day after he vowed to fight the spill “with everything we’ve got”, Obama was to meet at the White House at 1415 GMT with the energy group’s executives, the first time he as done so since the crisis began nearly two months ago.
The spill — called by Obama the worst environmental disaster America has ever faced — threatens to distract him from a domestic agenda of bringing down nearly double-digit U.S. unemployment and reforming Wall Street.
Facing perhaps the biggest challenge of his presidency, Obama accused BP of “recklessness” in a televised address from the Oval Office.
Obama wants BP to establish a fund to guarantee it would cover the billions of dollars needed to clean up the mess and compensate people and businesses affected.
— Reuters