WASHINGTON--Republican leaders could not run away fast enough from Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) apology to BP CEO Tony Hayward during the House hearing on the Gulf coast oil spill. Barton was threatened with loss of his spot as the top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
"I apologize for using the term 'shakedown' with regard to yesterday's actions at the White House in my opening statement this morning, and I retract my apology to BP. As I told my colleagues yesterday and said again this morning, BP should bear the full financial responsibility for the accident on their lease in the Gulf of Mexico. BP should fully compensate those families and businesses that have been hurt by this accident. BP and the federal government need to stop the leak, clean up the damage, and take whatever steps necessary to prevent a similar accident in the future.
"I regret the impact that my statement this morning implied that BP should not pay for the consequences of their decisions and actions in this incident."