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Senator Dole In Perpetual Offshore Drilling Flip-Flop

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Sometimes flip-flops happen so fast that the candidate can't even keep with his or her changing positions.

Senator Elizabeth Dole, who is facing reelection this fall, is a recent convert to the GOP issue du-jour: offshore drilling. For a while, the North Carolina Republican was a fierce opponent of the concept, expressing concern that it could damage her state's coastline and thus damage the tourism industry. But now, it seems, she's all for drilling off the North Carolina coast, labeling it an important step to achieving energy independence.

The one problem: Dole's position change came so fast her staff simply couldn't keep up. Right now, the Senator has two completely incongruous statements listed on her official Senate website.

Under the "Issues & Legislation" energy section, Dole is quoted offering a broad critic of offshore drilling (screenshot below):

"...I'll be fighting to ensure that no steps are taken toward drilling off of North Carolina's coast. Offshore drilling not only would be harmful to our environment, it would be detrimental to an industry that is extremely important to North Carolina's coastal economy - tourism."

Contrast that with the press release issued by Dole's office on July 14, 2008, in which the Senator praised the President's decision to lift the federal moratorium on offshore drilling.

"The solution to our energy crisis is finding more and using less. Families struggling with record high gas prices can't afford for Congress to keep energy exploration options off the table." ... On June 26, Senator Dole co-sponsored the Gas Price Reduction Act of 2008, which would satisfy the need for Congressional action in lifting the OCS exploration ban by giving individual states the option of utilizing their deep ocean resources."

The Senator's staff did not immediately return request for comment.

Nico Pitney will be discussing energy and off-shore drilling during tomorrow's episode of Meet the Bloggers. You can watch the show live at 1PM ET/10AM PT at MeetTheBloggers.org or on the Huffington Post.