WASHINGTON -- Representative Edward Markey, Democrat of Malden, will lead a bipartisan congressional delegation Friday to Louisiana to continue investigating the massive offshore oil leak that is threatening the Gulf region, the congressman's office said.
Markey, who chairs the Select Committee for Energy Independence and Global Warming, will head a 10-person team from the House Energy and Commerce Committee, of which Markey is a senior member.
The group will be briefed by the Coast Guard and others monitoring the spill, the do a fly-over to examine the damage, said Markey spokesman Eben Burnham-Snyder. Markey's spokesman. They will also meet with fisherman, shrimpers, and others affected by the leak, which has already been deemed worse that the Exxon Valdez spill in 1989.
The spill occurred after a BP-run rig exploded April 20 and sank, killing 11 people on the crew. Workers are trying to contain the spill so it does not travel even further up the coast and damage fishing and tourism industries critical to coastal residents.
The Energy and Commerce Committee is conducting an investigation of the spill.
"It's one thing to conduct an investigation here, from Washington, DC, which obviously is what Representative Markey and others are doing," Burnham-Snyder said. "It always helps to go to the scene of an accident and see first hand" what is happening.
Markey and Representative Lois Capps, Democrat of California, introduced a bill Thursday to create a commission to stud the spill and its effect. A similar commission was established after the Three Mile Island nuclear accident in 1979.
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Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.