This morning a Republican Member of Congress apologized to BP. Yes, you heard it right. Congressman Joe Barton (R, TX) apologized to British Petroleum CEO Tony Hayward because the White House got BP to create a $20 billion escrow account to pay for the ecological disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.
I’m astonished. Rep. Barton and his Republican colleagues are more upset that President Obama is forcing BP to pay for its devastation than they are at BP for pouring hundreds of millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf.
Not one Republican Member of Congress from PA has said they disagree with Barton. So we’re going to give every Senator and Representative to answer this simple question: Whose side are you on? BP or the American people?
Barton is the ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. He should be overseeing BP and other drillers, but instead of holding them accountable, he’s apologizing to them. Perhaps it’s because of the millions in contributions flowing from the oil companies into their campaign coffers.
Here’s exactly what Barton said this morning:
“I'm ashamed of what happened in the White House yesterday. I think it is a tragedy in the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown -- in this case a $20 billion shakedown -- with the attorney general of the United States, who is legitimately conducting a criminal investigation and has every right to do so to protect the American people, participating in what amounts to a $20 billion slush fund that's unprecedented in our nation's history, which has no legal standing, which I think sets a terrible precedent for our nation's future.
"I'm only speaking for myself. I'm not speaking for anyone else, but I apologize," Barton added. "I do not want to live in a county where anytime a citizen or a corporation does something that is legitimately wrong, [it is] subject to some sort of political pressure that, again, in my words, amounts to a shakedown."
I’m angry at Barton. But I’m also angry that not one Republican Member of Congress has repudiated what Barton said. Email Congress NOW: http://www.keystoneprogress.org/page/speakout/pabarton
for the Keystone Progress Team