Obama talks auto research, development in Ohio

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- President Barack Obama said Thursday that his administration has shown a commitment to drilling for oil all over the nation, but he has his limits: No drilling at Ohio Stadium.

Obama made the comments in jest to his critics during a speech at Ohio State University.

The president highlighted his energy agenda this week in Nevada, New Mexico and Oklahoma before making his last stop in the presidential battleground of Ohio. The trip reflects the degree to which high gas prices have begun hitting consumers in their pocketbooks.

He said his administration would drill for oil in a manner that protects people's health and safety and the country's resources.

"I'm not drilling in the South Lawn," he told a boisterous crowd at a recreation center. "We're not drilling next to the Washington Monument. We're not drilling in Ohio Stadium."

Before his speech, Ohio toured the university's Center for Automotive Research, where he spoke with students and saw the world's fastest electric car, the Buckeye Bullet 2.

Obama visited Ohio last week for an NCAA tournament basketball game.

The basketball fan-in-chief gave a shout-out Thursday to Ohio's four teams in the final 16 -- Ohio University, Ohio State, Cincinnati and Xavier.

Obama acknowledged that he has Ohio State's Buckeyes heading to the Final Four in his bracket. Still, he said to laughter, "I'm not going to get in the middle of this."

"I do want to just say no state has ever done this before," Obama added. "So it's a testimony to Ohio basketball."

As Obama departed, he spelled out the traditional O-H-I-O cheer with his arms. Students in the crowd chanted, "four more years!"