Nightly News | June 16, 2010
HOLT: all this was received along the Gulf Coast and that comment from BP 's chairman calling residents the small people , which rubbed an already weary community the wrong way. NBC 's Ron Mott is in Pensacola , Florida , tonight.
RON MOTT reporting: The frustration with BP along the Gulf Coast escalated today, and that small comment from the oil company's chairman is a big reason why. In Louisiana , a restaurant worker was steaming.
Ms. MICHELLE TERREBONNE (Grand Isle Cook): We're not small down here. We take care of ourselves. Give us a situation, we can handle it.
MOTT: On Pensacola Beach , this real estate broker was baffled and offended.
Mr. JOHN PINZINO (Real Estate Broker): We're certainly not small people . This is a beautiful part of the country, and don't know why he's doing that.
MOTT: Does it anger you?
Mr. PINZINO: Yes, it does. It makes me very angry.
MOTT: And Gulf Coast historian Douglas Brinkley says this is becoming familiar.
Mr. DOUGLAS BRINKLEY (Historian): But every time a BP executive opens their mouths, whether it's in a commercial or on a talk show, they do more damage than they good -- than good they do.
MOTT: While news of BP 's $20 billion escrow account, money set aside to pay damage claims, was welcome, the mayor of Orange Beach , Alabama , says he's being told the check's in the mail.
Mr. TONY KENNON (Orange Beach, Alabama, Mayor): If we don't get cash in the bank soon, because of the way our economy works down here, we're going to have beautiful beaches, but we're going to be a ghost town.
MOTT: All this on the heels of President Obama 's first Oval Office address Tuesday night getting a cool reception today.
Mr. GARLAND ROBINETTE (WWL Radio): What I heard from President Obama last night gave me confidence in nothing.
MOTT: On talk radio in New Orleans , disappointment that the president offered few specifics about cleanup and restoration plans.
Offscreen Voice #2: I think last night's speech left us wanting. You said it best. It was a disappointment.
Pres. OBAMA: The time to embrace a clean energy future is now.
MOTT: Mayor Kennon met with the president Monday, saying he was optimistic about what he heard -- until last night.
Mr. KENNON: I really don't give a damn about a clean energy bill. I'm worried about paying the bills.
MOTT: Worries now mixed with even more frustration. Ron Mott, NBC News, Pensacola Beach .