May 21st, 2010
10:42 AM ET
13 years ago

Paul says Obama being too tough on BP

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul is taking aim at President Barack Obama's handling of the oil crisis off the Gulf Coast."](CNN) - Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul is taking aim at President Barack Obama's handling of the oil crisis off the Gulf Coast.

The president, Paul told ABC, is being too tough on BP - the oil giant that controls the well that has been leaking thousands of barrels of oil a day in the Gulf since late last month.

"What I don't like from the president's administration is this sort of 'I'll put my boot heel on the throat of BP,'" said Paul who overwhelmingly won Tuesday's GOP Senate primary in Kentucky and is a favorite of Tea Party activists. "I think that sounds really un-American in his criticisms of businesses."

"I've heard nothing from BP about not paying for the spill," Paul continued. "I think it's part of this blame game society in the sense that it's always got to be someone's fault, instead of the fact that sometimes accidents happen."

Since capturing the Senate nomination, Paul has faced a barrage of questions over his past criticisms of several federal regulations that intrude on the private sector, including provisions of the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the national minimum wage.

"When does my honeymoon period start?" said Paul when he was again asked about his past statements Friday. "I had a big victory. I thought I got a honeymoon period from you guys in the media."

Democrat Jack Conway, Paul's opponent in the Kentucky Senate race, released a statement Friday slamming Paul over his comments on BP.

"Rand Paul apparently has a deeply held conviction that corporations should be allowed to do what they see fit without oversight or accountability. He even goes so far as to say that that criticizing corporations when they hurt taxpayers and working families – as in the case of the massive BP oil disaster – is 'un-American,'" Conway said.

Filed under: 2010 • Energy • Kentucky • Popular Posts • President Obama • Rand Paul
soundoff (301 Responses)
  1. notfooledbydistractions

    Wow. After hearing Mr. Pauls comments on a variety of subjects in the last couple days, I have to wonder...what planet is this crackpot living on?

    It's apparent that mr. paul has a leaning toward business running the country, and in light of the recent BP events and our economic fiasco, I would hope that the majority of Americans would see just how wrong-headed mr. pauls thinking truly is.

    Eliminate social security, the epa, medicare (except for payments to doctors such as himself), the fair housing act, the ada, the board of education.

    Yes mr. paul, we've seen the effects of doing it your way – the oil companies were regulating themselves, and as a result we have the biggest ecologic disaster in our nations history. Wall Street was basically self-regulating, and it lead to a near depression. Sorry chump, your way doesn't work.

    Nice job Kentucky, I surely hope election remorse it hitting hard and heavy.

    May 21, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  2. Taiwo

    This guy is really nuts for getting on bp side

    May 21, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  3. Linda

    CNN: Why are you giving this looney tune so much press time?

    There are many more issues of immediate concern like the oil spill that could be he worst in the history of the US. The truth about
    how much oil is leaking into the Gulf, the conflict of interest
    concern regarding the lab testing the oil in the water.

    Is the Tea Party financing CNN?

    Fair and balanced reporting would behoove you!

    May 21, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  4. marco felix

    Sorry Charlie! you're playing with the big boys now!

    May 21, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  5. Robert Warner

    The president, Paul told ABC, is being too tough on BP ________________________________________
    Yeah, all they did was screw up an ocean, a coast line, several ecosystems, the tourist industry of Florida and the Gulf coast and the fishing industry of the entire region- gee whilickers, stop picking on them! I think that this idiot proves my theory that the Tea Party is actually a nefarious invention of the Democrats to destroy the GOP. A few more nitwits like Rand Paul on the Republican ticket should do it.

    May 21, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  6. FloridaIndependent

    This is where I disagree with the Libritarians. Just an accident? Nobody's fault? Next I guess they will give BP another big tax break and lower the damages cap. Greed got the better of these people and they didn't use the best technology when constructing the well head. How much of this is the tax payer and gulf coast people going to have to pay to bail out BP? Sorry Rand, but like your back tracking on Civil Rights, you need to do some more deep thinking about lack of government oversight and intervention on this issue.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  7. sonny chapman

    He's so naive`. I guess that's from living a sheltered life. BP must be dealt with as sternly as if they were a rogue nation–hell, they're richer than most rogue nations & don't take to being told what to do very easily.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  8. Anonymous

    Mr Paul is way off base criticizing this administration for bearing down on big oil..What would he have them do.. pat their hands and tell them good job? The petroleum corporations have been getting away with virtual murder (figure of speech) for decades.

    What are Paul's stock holdings? This guy is new into the National arena.. Let's hope his stay is very short lived.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  9. Miles Togo

    Mr. Paul, since when is criticism of BP (remember "British Petroleum") un-American? And BP gets a pass for causing the worst environmental disaster in the history of the Gulf Coast, if not the USA, because they haven't said they won't pay for it? It is not playing "the Blame Game" to call out those responsible for an act more damaging than terrorists could ever hope to accomplish. Along with your comments regarding the Civil Rights Act, you show a tremendous ability to adhere to principles like freedom of contract and little grasp of reality.

    There is no honeymoon period for idiocy.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  10. Duane

    Mr. Paul is obviously in the camp of the fools who want the American people to pick up the $100B tab (in Florida alone) for this economic catastrophe. BP is a convicted repeat felon who kills people and is now terrorizing the the people of the Gulf Coast with an impending economic and ecologic collapse. I am sure Mr. Paul wants Mr. Obama to get tough on these terrorists–or is he? Whose pocket is he in?

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  11. Steve Lord

    Rand Paul's comments (on CNN) implied that the ADA wolud require an employer to spend $100,000 to accomodate a disabled employee rather than simply move the employee's office to a more accessable location. This is absolutely false. The ADA requires only "reasonable accomdations." And it specifically gives an exemption for "undo financial hardship." Either Mr. Paul is ignorant of the actual wording of the ADA, or he's just plain dishonest.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  12. Laverne

    Is everyone associated with the Tea Party stuck on stupid??? Why shouldn't Obama be tough on BP? The make and made billions off of the American people and will no doubt try and stick our tax payers with the bill if someone don't step up and call them out right away. Rand Paul is the one who is unamerican who would like to see us go back to segregation. It is interesting the types of candidates that are a part of the tea party, ei, Sarah Palin types. Thanks President Obama for standing up for taxpayers and trying to change the subject Rand Paul won't work, we are on to you!!!

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  13. Jeff in Virginia

    Sorry Rand Paul, you're a nut bar. You do not get a honeymoon.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |

    Rand Paul, I admire your frankness. It's nice to see a politician who doesn't run all his comments past a focus group. But do you really think Obama has been too tough on the perpetrators of what's shaping up to be the biggest environmental disaster of the century? Seriously? Seems to me, the boys at BP should be able too handle something as as insignificant as a tongue lashing.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  15. Poser

    Accidents may happen but the oil spill is absolutely BP's fault and as a nation we need to demand that they take responsibility for cleaning up their mess.
    The GOP is supposedly the party of personal responsibility. They claim corporations are persons. When the time comes for someone (BP) to actually take responsibility, Rand Paul wants to give them a pass and just claim 'accidents happen'. I disagree. The accident was preventable. They made a conscious decision to put profits over safety. They had no contingency plans in case something did happen. They grossly underestimated (or under reported) the rate at which the oil is spilling into the Gulf. This is what happens when regulations are removed or not enforced.

    Keep talking Rand Paul. You're making it all too clear what's wrong with the right wing of the GOP (Tea Party) and this will hurt the GOP in general. The "less government" mantra is code for deregulate everything and let corporations screw whomever they want to in the name of profits.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  16. Beatrice

    ...yes accidents happen, but BP should have had a back-plan to deal for this kind of accident. With the profit they make I don't understand why they didn't invest in research to deal with every tragic scenario they can think of. And workers died. The all thing is a tragedy.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  17. Take America Back

    Can you believe this idiot…..I mean Obama, not necessarily Pinocchio/Calderon. If anyone thinks; (1) Pinocchio/Calderon just happened to show-up for this visit right after Obama takes another big political hit or (2) That Pinocchio wrote that speech he regurgitated today w/out the help of Obama staffers, or (3) that Obama had no control over what he said…..I have some ocean front property in Arkansas I want to sell them!

    I employ several legal immigrants and one recently said to me; “I think they should simply let all illegals become legal and bypass the system, after all, they only want to work and provide for their families”. I then responded, “ if you feel that way, tell them to come see me and I will give them your job..” Of course he had a change of heart. Every illegal I have known have the same goals; (1) Make all the money they can in the US w/out paying into the system. (2) Return home (go back to Mexico) one day and live like a king. They have no interest in becoming a legal, responsible, tax-paying Americans…..but they learn quickly how to “work the system” and enjoy all the benfits thereof. This president should be impeached due to his disrespect for this nation.

    May 21, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  18. Tom

    I guess he thinks we should lay off Exxon as well. You know, that other company that spilled oil all those years ago (which is still there!), and yet they're still fighting the settlement. Make no mistake. BP is not going to pay any more money out than they have to. It's a business decision to protect company money.

    May 21, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  19. josephine

    He is right. It is Obama's fault and the Dems will pay 2010 and 2012. If you want your country back, you know who to vote for.

    May 21, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  20. Robert

    Republican Senate candidate and civil rights undoer, Rand Paul calls Obama Administration's criticisms of British Petroleum, a British-owned company, headquartered in Great Britain, a country that does not belong to the United States and that does not reside in North or South America, "Un-American".

    When reminded that the "B" in BP stands for "British", Mr. Paul stated, "And because of that, the US government cannot make laws to force them to desegregate. I like black people."

    May 21, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  21. steven rigerl

    i live in florida here the tourism has dropped because people are afraid to come to oily beaches and ruin a hard earned vacation , buss is suffering all over the gulf coast and this TURKEY from kentucky KNOWS this was just an accident . according to everything ive read fail-safe procedures didnt work or were inadequate . if you watched 60 minutes sunday nite the story was told . bp might pay for the clean-up BUT the lose to private buss. is capped .for a POLITICIAN whos SO pro buss. he should be demanding help .this isnt about the oil slick its about OBAMA and thats the truth

    May 21, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  22. payback

    .....What Planet is this guy from?....Planet, delusion. I guess. To say, that, the President is been too tough. Give me a break. tea-bag leaders, really send chills down my spine...................................

    May 21, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  23. Jeff Clemetson of San Diego

    This guy is such a windbag. Yes accidents do happen, but what also happens is oil company lobbyists go to Washington and convince (read: buy) the support of Cheney/Bush to not require oil rigs to be equipped with shut off valves that can be triggered remotely. Triggers that the rest of the world's coastal oil producing nations require for rigs operating off their coasts. But when the contracts for this particular oil rig came up during the Cheney years, there was no requirement for the equipment because the valves cost around $500,000 a piece.
    Rand Paul, Obama and the American people, especially those who live in the Gulf, have EVERY right to put a boot heal on BP and break their necks.

    May 21, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  24. Richard Marks

    Rand Paul is NOT Ron Paul; it is NOT a case of "like father, like son". Nothing this little neo-con weasel might say would surprise me. I supported RON Paul, but this little con artist will go nowhere . . . hopefully.

    May 21, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  25. RedMan, CA

    Why does the "right" hate America?

    BP is responsible for a massive disaster, and all this f@@l can do is defend them and take pot shots at the POTUS. Pathetic and despicable.

    Am I the only one here that thinks this guy is crazy? Of course I am, because I care about silly things like people, the environment, etc..

    To be with the "right" all I should care about is money, guns and "freedoms", oh and pretend to care about Jesus... while I constantly judge everything and everyone that disagrees with my narrow-minded view on things. Pretty much sums it up!

    Americans deserve what they get if they continue to vote against their own self interests in favor of Corporations and elect f@@s like Rand and listen to f@@ls like Sarah that pander to them.

    Bank's hedging against their investors, Mine's blowing up killing 29 souls, massive oil spills... How's that deregulation working out for ya?

    May 21, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
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