Obama Criticizes Mine Owner, Orders Safety Review

"President Obama on Thursday ordered a review of mines with poor safety records and criticized the owner of a West Virginia coal mine where an explosion killed 29 people last week.The April 5 blast was the worst U.S. mine disaster in nearly 40 years. In remarks at the White House, Obama said the explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine was due in part to failures by both the management and loopholes in existing laws and regulations.Obama cited ""a failure first and foremost of management, a failure of oversight and a failure of laws so riddled with loopholes"" that companies repeatedly can violate safety regulations without penalty. The president spoke to reporters after meeting Thursday with Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and Joseph Main of the Mine Safety and Health Administration to discuss the accident.Obama called Massey Energy Co., a coal producer that owns the Upper Big Branch Mine, a ""safety violator"" and described the safety record at the mine as ""troubled."""