After the Florida House of Representatives voted 70-43 to sell out their beaches to the promise of oil drilling revenues by allowing drilling within 3 miles of the shore, Senate leaders and Governor Charlie Crist called at least a tempoary halt to the madness.

“I’m not receptive to it,” said Senate President Jeff Atwater.

Crist said that he was concerned about the “lateness of the hour” and the “closeness to shore” of the plan to give the governor and Cabinet authority to accept applications for oil and gas drilling between 3 and 10 miles off Florida’s beaches.

“I think [Rep. Dean] Cannon is leading his party off the cliff,” said Eric Draper, lobbyist for the Florida Audubon Society. “This is an idea brought in by Texas oil companies who are interested in the right to drill in Florida and doing it on the cheap.” More