The President Can Legally Take Over

The "top kill" solution is being delayed until Wednesday while the size of the gusher appears to be getting larger. And if the top kill fails, Andrew Revkin from the New York Times writes that it's entirely legal under the terms of the Clean Water Act and the Oil Pollution Act for the president to take over the site. In fact, it obligates him to do so.

(A) If a discharge, or a substantial threat of a discharge, of oil or a hazardous substance from a vessel, offshore facility, or onshore facility is of such a size or character as to be a substantial threat to the public health or welfare of the United States (including but not limited to fish, shellfish, wildlife, other natural resources, and the public and private beaches and shorelines of the United States), the President shall direct all Federal, State, and private actions to remove the discharge or to mitigate or prevent the threat of the discharge. (the rest of the Switchboard post)

So let's get going.