Another GOP governor seeks exclusion from drilling proposal

WASHINGTON (AP) — Another Republican governor is asking the Trump administration to exclude his state from a plan to open more U.S. coastal waters to offshore oil drilling.

The request from South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster follows the Interior Department’s decision to exclude Florida from the offshore drilling proposal. South Carolina’s governor, like Florida’s, is a Republican.

Democrats are accusing President Donald Trump and his interior secretary, Ryan Zinke, of hypocrisy by agreeing to Florida’s request but not to similar requests by the Democratic governors opposing the drilling expansion.

A spokeswoman for Zinke says such criticism is “empty pandering” and invites governors to seek a meeting with the Interior secretary.

The five-year plan would open 90 percent of the nation’s offshore reserves to development by private companies.