OBAMA HAS STRONG WORDS AS GULF SPILL SPREADS
President Barack Obama said he wanted to know 'whose ass to kick' over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, adding to the pressure on energy giant, BP Plc, as it sought to capture more of the leak from its gushing well.
'I don't sit around just talking to experts because this is a college seminar.
'We talk to these folks because they potentially have the best answer so I know whose ass to kick,' Obama said in an interview with NBC News' 'Today' air on Tuesday.
They were the angriest words yet about the catastrophe from Obama, who has been criticised for his response to the worst oil spill in US history.
Obama reiterated that all those affected should be adequately compensated.
In London, BP's share price lost 3.6 per cent after Obama's remarks, reversing the previous day's gains.
The company's shares are down more than a third from mid-April.
The stakes remain high for all involved, from Gulf Coast communities devastated by the disaster to Obama and his domestic standing to BP and its battered reputation with the public and investors.
A Washington Post/ABC poll found that 69 per cent of Americans believe the government had done a 'not so good'' or 'poor'' job handling the spill.
Just over 1,000 people were surveyed in the poll, conducted between June 3 and 6.
BP's shares closed down slightly in London on Monday.
It has lost about a third of its value since the crisis erupted in late April and it took another blow as Goldman Sachs downgraded its rating on BP to 'neutral' from 'buy.'
While a complete halt to the flow of oil is not expected until August at the earliest, BP reported an increase in the amount of oil it is capturing from the well in its latest containment effort.