Commentary: Crist's timing is off on offshore drilling special session

On May 6, Gov. Charlie Crist called for a special session of the Legislature to put an oil drilling ban on the ballot for Florida voters to ensure no drilling up to 10 miles from our shores.

It's a good idea — one we supported in May. But Gov. Crist then pulled back and let the issue languish. Last week, he switched gears again, calling for a special session July 20-23— his so-called "rifle shot" in the wind.

That smacks of political opportunism little more than a week before voters are to receive their absentee ballots and barely a month before the Aug. 24 primary.

Floridians are truly disgusted by the BP oil blowout and the consequences of lax federal oversight of deep-water drilling in neighboring states that have benefited from oil company payments over the decades. Florida law, by contrast, already bans drilling off the state's coast, but as we have seen, a state ban does not control Gulf currents, as sludge and tar balls have washed up in Pensacola and other Panhandle areas from the BP disaster.

To read the complete editorial, visit www.miamiherald.com.