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Rep. Joe Barton's BP apology apology: Was it enough? Apology text


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.

from Barton....

"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."


Barton's initial comments typify in general the Republican party mindset toward the average American (corporations 1st, people 2nd or maybe a distant 4th behind dogs and cats). Think about it next time you vote.

Barton's apology/clarification avoids a major issue for me.

The point of the fund (as I understand it) is to make it simpler for people and businesses harmed by BP to make claims.

Does Barton understand the goal of the fund?

Does he think that the Obama administration will somehow skim money? Allow claims by Democrats but not Republicans?

If the fund reduces the need for litigation and expedites money being delivered to parties harmed, is he opposed to this?

What was Barton's original theory on why this fund was a bad thing?

BP agreed to it. Does Barton theorize that President Obama used some illegal threat to get BP to agree to creating and contributing to the fund?

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 18, 2010 6:49 AM.

President Obama official schedule and guidance, June 18, 2010. Columbus, Ohio was the previous entry in this blog.

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