Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office is hailing as a “big deal” support by two dozen senators for her accelerated sharing of royalty revenues with producing states, according to the Associated Press. Supporters include three fellow Democrats from non-oil producing states as well as GOP Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Oklahoma's Tom Coburn, who signed onto a letter urging acceleration. The bipartisan charge is being led by Landrieu and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska.

The letter reads in part:
Each of us and our constituents hold varying views on offshore energy production in the federal waters seaward of our states. We make no collective statement on such production — some of us would favor it and some of us would not necessarily favor it. We are united, however, in our position that any such production in federal waters must include a program in which affected coastal states and coastal political subdivisions are entitled to a share of the federal revenues resulting from such production.
With the abandonment last week of so-called cap-and-trade climate legislation, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he will bring a bill to the floor this week addressing the BP Gulf spill. The legislation will likely include new drilling regulations and increased liabilities for companies that cause spills. Landrieu is pressing Reid to include accelerated revenue sharing, which, if ultimately approved, would cut into federal revenues, no doubt making it a hard sell for many deficit-conscious lawmakers.

Read the full letter here.

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