Political Notebook

SLO County

Democrats are asking Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield, to repudiate a suggestion Thursday by House Minority Leader John Boehner that taxpayers should help foot the bill for cleaning up the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

McCarthy appeared to do so Friday, when he told The Tribune in an e-mail that he is on the record saying “BP should be held accountable to pay for every problem they caused.” ‬

A day earlier, Boehner, R-Ohio, had said “I think the people responsible in the oil spill — BP and the federal government — should take full responsibility for what’s happening there.”

But on Friday, Boehner backtracked from his earlier statement.

“Boehner made a general statement about who is responsible for the spill, and the federal government oversight was clearly lacking, but he has said repeatedly that BP is responsible for the cost of the cleanup,” according to his spokesman, Michael Steel.

Democrats said Boehner’s views coincided with those of Tom Donohue, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, who told ABC News that “Everybody is going to contribute to this cleanup.”

“We are all going to have to do it,” Donohue said. “We are going to have to get the money from the government and from the companies, and we will figure out a way to do that.”

— Bob Cuddy

SLO County

Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, received a leadership award June 8 from the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation “in appreciation of her lifelong support of the National Marine Sanctuaries and America’s oceans.”

The foundation said Capps has worked to protect the natural resources of California and its waters as well as the broader environmental health of the U.S.

It cited her involvement in legislation that protects coastal and estuarine habitat, reformed U.S. fisheries and aquaculture management, and developed an integrated coastal and ocean observation system.

Capps also helped establish the bipartisan 26-member National Marine Sanctuary Caucus in the House of Representatives, the foundation noted.

In accepting the award, Capps warned that the ocean “faces significant challenges, like global warming and acidification, overfishing and pollution, and, of course, oil spills. What we do together going forward will truly define our nation’s commitment to protecting our oceans.”

Created in 2000, the National Marine Sanctuary System encompasses a coast-to-coast network of 13 federally designated sanctuaries and one marine national monument — more than 150,000 square miles in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and the Great Lakes. That includes the Channel Islands and Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuaries off the California coast.

The event was held in conjunction with U.N. World Oceans Day.

— Bob Cuddy

Paso Robles

The Paso Robles Republican Women Federated group meets the third week of each month at the Paso Robles Golf Club, 1600 Country Club Drive.

The next meeting is planned for 11:30 a.m. Monday. It is expected to feature speaker Shelly Reeger, founder of Supplies for Soldiers, a Paso Robles-based nonprofit that sends care packages to local soldiers deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. She will talk about the organization and items needed by the soldiers.

Reeger will speak after the noontime lunch. The public is invited. The cost is $15 for lunch. Reservations are required. Contact Shirley Butler at pasoshirleyb@gmail.com or 674-5715.

— Tonya Strickland