Republican Congressman Barton Calls BP Escrow Funds A “Shakedown”, Apologizes to BP
Representative Joe Barton apologized (Republican, Texas 6th District) directly to BP CEO Tony Hayward twice for the USA requiring BP to establish an escrow fund for the Gulf Oil Spill damages. Barton called procuring funds from BP for Gulf Oil Spill victims a “shakedown”. The alarmed Republican Congressional leadership apparently then met with Barton during the lunch break and let him know to not tell the public what the Republican loyalty and agenda really was. Barton came back in the afternoon and attempted to say he didn’t mean what he said – whatever.
Barton, a former ARCO oil company executive plus a Tea Party booster and favorite, feels BP’s and the BP stockholders’ pain. He conveniently forgot the pain of the victims, the Gulf Coast residents, in the greatest environmental disaster in American history. Even the aloof BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg said, “We care about the small people”. Small as they be perceived by Svanberg, Barton doesn’t even care about the so-called “small people”, just BP and their shareholders.
BP CEO Tony Hayward, after receiving Barton’s apology, was evasive, took no blame, and stonewalled the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. Hayward had obviously been very well coached by BP corporate attorneys to CYA on the inevitable civil and possibly criminal implications of BP’s astronomical liability exposure. Not sure if Hayward had to give both of Barton’s apology back later.
(Filed in the “I Know When I’m Getting Screwed by Republicans & Big Oil” folder)
Backlash Over Republican Congressman Joe Barton Apology to BP
Wolf Blitzer (CNN) gets reaction from Louisiana Representative Charlie Melancon to Representative Joe Barton’s “shakedown” remark. (This comes after BP Chair calls Louisianans “small people”).
Greenpeace: How Would You Rebrand BP? Contest