This is a horrendously bad idea, but is anyone really that surprised?
"The Obama administration will reverse its policy on offshore drilling announced last March and bar further new drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts. The new ban will last seven years, and that will deliver a body blow to American exploration and energy independence
The official explanation will be that the Gulf oil spill requires a lot more reform in regulatory practices, which we certainly discovered in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and spill. The White House began backpedaling on this policy almost immediately after the disaster in April, even before Obama bothered to spend more time addressing the issue than the Arizona immigration-enforcement law. The complete reversal was almost inevitable, and delaying it until after the midterms even more so."