June 17th, 2010
04:43 PM ET
13 years ago

Barton retracts apology to BP

Rep. Joe Barton apologized Thursday for using the term 'shakedown' regarding the the $20 billion fund BP agreed to establish for damage compensation, and retracted his apology to BP:

"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."

Filed under: BP • Energy • Joe Barton • Obama administration • Popular Posts
soundoff (121 Responses)
  1. rdepontb

    A gutless, clueless, can't-see-past-his-nose twit. Enough said about Rep Joe Barton, late of the Great State of Texas.

    June 17, 2010 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  2. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Apology NOT accepted... who in HELL do you think you are?

    I say you're a scum-sucking traitor sticking up for BIG OIL no matter what.


    June 17, 2010 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. Darko

    I understood exactly what he meant, as he was right.

    This administration are experts at 'shaking down' businesses.

    They threatened to pass laws that they have absolutely no authority to pass.

    BP will pay, but let THEM decide on the method. It's in the best interest of everyone if BP remains profitable so that the payments don't run dry.

    June 17, 2010 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  4. Steph

    Hey Republicans....Tony Hayward has quite a bit of "executive experience". Maybe he can be your Presidential candidate! Wait, he can't since he's not a US citizen (we've been over this and over this and over this) so how about Lamar McKay, Chairman and President of BP in America. He's got lots of "executive experience". You should LOVE him, right????

    June 17, 2010 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  5. MAC

    I would trust BP to pay for fewer legitimate claims than I would trust any government agent to not pay the frauds and scammers since we know how they like to spend other peoples money. BP had better trust but verify the distribution of their 20 billion. Look at the scams and fraud from all the other disasters including Katrina.

    June 17, 2010 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  6. West Gates

    Hold it!! I thought conservative Republicans believed in the religious nature of capitalism. BP took risks to maximize profits. BP avoided caution to increase the ROI. They lost. They pay. If they go out of business a better more efficient company will take their place. That's the nature of the game.

    June 17, 2010 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  7. ConsiderThis - FL

    Words cannot adequately express the filth that spews from the hearts, minds and mouths of people like Burton and all those who call the good that President Obama has done for the benefit of the the people of the Gulf region a "Shakedown," "Redistribution of wealth fund" and other vulgar descriptions. Who else but Republicans would have such thoughts? The hatred that people have for our President is totally out of hand and what's appalling is that they feel safe and empowered to show it. America is on a very sippery slope. Do you think that God is going to bless America given the way that we hate HIS appointed leader? America, you better think twice. The disaster is the Gulf may be just the beginning of woes.

    June 17, 2010 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  8. NC

    What a jerk, idiot and other names I can't put in writing this republican is. I guess he will get a lot of donations for his ignorance like some of the others with foot and mouth disease. It is time for people like this to leave office. I had no idea that our country had so many imbeciles until I really started paying attention to Politics about 3 years ago when I retired.

    June 17, 2010 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  9. Tom

    When he made his initial statement, he did so because, like so many republicans, he can't stand the fact the Obama is in the White House. If Obama found a cure for cancer, the hooplehead would have said Obama was putting doctors out of a job.

    June 17, 2010 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  10. Peter

    Republicans need to be very worried about Nov...its gonna be a slaughter fest!!! Election night poll: who do you think has your best interests A) Democrats B) Republicans? A baby in the womb already knows the answer to this one!!! Vote the Republican Bums out ASAP!!! Lord help us till November so we can do this!!! Amen!!!

    June 17, 2010 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  11. Marcel, SATEX

    Barton is not the only Republican defending BP. Add Palin, Michelle B., Boene and rMcCain. This is not new for the GOP. This is same old same old for the GOP. Protect the greedy oil companies and corporations Stick it to the middle class.

    June 17, 2010 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. Shermani

    This was a shake down, and an ill fated attempt for the messiah to appear as though he is really doing something about this crisis. Clearly he has failed. Rep. Barton should have stood his ground, and he would have received a more favorable response from the general public, the individuals that really do vote. Oh well, now that he has turned coat on this issue, he can go away just like the messiah.

    June 17, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  13. Mack

    I'll bet the staffer that wrote Barton's initial comment about the shakdown is looking for another job by now!!!!!


    June 17, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  14. upshotknothole

    The man shouldn't apologise for this. because it is exactly what Obama did. It is called rackettering and should be considered a misdomenor under the constitution.

    It isn't soon enough before we get rid of this guy. Either by a new majority in congress or otherwise.

    June 17, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  15. El Gordo

    My family moved to Texas from Tennessee shortly after the Civil War. We have been Texans ever since. I would like to apologize to the nation for the incredibly low quality of Texas' elected officials. Let by Gov. "Rebel Yell" Rick Perry, Sen. John "Hell No" Cornyn, and Sen. Kay "Personality-Free" Hutchison, Texas' elected officials continue to embarrass our noble state in front of the nation and the world.

    Texans are good people by and large, but they have lately developed a congenital preference for stupid leadership. Texans on Social Security will vote for a man who plans to end Social Security. Texans who can't make a living wage will vote for a man who is opposed to wage increases of any kind for any one. Texans who worry about children's' health will vote for a man who will vote against child health care programs. This is a mental disorder caused by the peculiar combination of minerals in our water, I guess.

    Anyway, I'm so sorry.

    June 17, 2010 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  16. M Sherman

    Joe, you can't apologize! That's not what BP is paying you for!

    June 17, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  17. gbb

    Most of ya'll must be pretty shallow to not understand what he said originally. Everyone including Barton knows what a disaster this well has become. Mr. Obama is not going to make anyone pay (he doesn't have to since it is already a federal law). BP is on the hook period.The law is already in place for BP to pay up. Its all a show game for the politicians. It's no different that the Arizona law which by the way is a federal law. The only difference is Arizona is going to enforce the law ..... something the feds are afraid to do which has gotten us all up in arms. Instead of Mr. Obama issuing threats and sending attorneys he along with his brain trusts should be focused on pushing the most brillant minds together to solve the problem. I think just about everyone realizes this will be in court for years to come. Let's get the problem fixed first, then the attorneys can play latter........

    June 17, 2010 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    I'm honestly suprised he was able to get the words out in the first place past all that Big Oil _____ in his mouth. Hey Barton, get out from under Hayward's desk and do your job for the COUNTRY, not your PARTY or your favorite LOBBYISTS.

    June 17, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  19. JohninTampa

    El Gordo, I'm in Florida. Thanks. But even with Barton I don't think you guys can touch South Carolina right now for the strangeness of your politicians. Sorry, SC.

    June 17, 2010 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  20. Bill

    Don't worry folks, it is only a matter of time before Texas sees its share of this oil disaster. And when it does, this buffoon should be made to clean up every drop by hand. That way he will not be part of a slush fund pay off. What a disgrace.

    June 17, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    "Let's get the problem fixed first, then the attorneys can play latter........"

    Precisely the kind of reasoning that makes us attorneys rich in the long run. "Don't plan ahead using professionals who have spent their lifetimes learning this area of law and the procedures applicable to it all...worry about all that later!" Let me be first to say that everyone should agree with you.

    June 17, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  22. stewart gilligan griffin

    He's just upset because he lost alot of money due to his holdings of BP stock. jerk.

    shermani, love how you are trying to have it both ways. how do you like living on hypocrit alley? the government is not doing enough. wait, the government is doing too much. i am for deregulation. wait, i am for regulation. love how people like you talk out of both sides of your mouth.

    June 17, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  23. Smith in Oregon

    Republican Congressman Barton from TEXAS was simply mouthing what ALL Republican lawmakers are saying, namely their special interest Big Oil buddy was forced by President Obama to pony up 20 Billion dollars into a private escrow fund.

    Notice how hugely hypocritical the Republican lawmakers have become when it expects the American taxpayers to foot a 20 Billion dollar cleanup cost rather than applaud a Democratic President with the courage and strength to stand up to BP's team of Attorneys and come away with 20 BILLION Dollars, go figure!

    June 17, 2010 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  24. Greg Smith

    Looks like someone didn't get the updated version of the Republican talking points but used an older version instead.

    June 17, 2010 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  25. Gorbashov - Long Beach, Ca.

    This is how the vast majority of Republicans REALLY think! Big Oil Bart was just stupid enough to say it! All the rest are just playing their base for fools!

    First it's Obama is not doing enough, and now it's he's doing too much!

    How does anyone take these creatons seriously?

    June 17, 2010 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
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