June 17th, 2010
09:10 PM ET
12 years ago

Stupak: Hayward 'absurd and ridiculous'

Washington (CNN) – Rep. Bart Stupak, a leading Democrat on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said BP CEO Tony Hayward looked "absurd and ridiculous" giving non-responsive testimony at Thursday's Gulf oil spill hearing.

"It was frustrating, not just to me but to the American people," Stupak said in an interview on CNN's "John King, USA." The Michigan congressman pointed out that the committee had sent Hayward a letter outlining the lines of questioning they intended to pursue and yet he still did not answer their questions.

"There comes a point in time when you almost become absurd and ridiculous. Unfortunately, I think that's how Tony Hayward looked to the American people," Stupak said.

Separately, Stupak defended the White House for including Attorney General Eric Holder in a Roosevelt Room meeting with BP executives on Wednesday. Holder's Justice Department has an active investigation into the oil giant following the disaster.

"I think it was worthwhile having the attorney general [in the meeting]. He helped put some parameters there," Stupak said.

Filed under: Bart Stupak • JKUSA • John King USA • Oil spill • Tony Hayward
soundoff (56 Responses)
  1. Annabella

    With all due respect , Mr. Stupak you didn't do so well yourself.
    It all came down to posturing , grandstanding and trashing BP.
    Obama set the precedence and you and your sidekicks followed suit.
    This is the time to focus on the oil spill and how to stop it and perhaps you should tell us why your government has not accepted the many resources and expertise that have been offered to you by the international community around the world.
    Having ignored them is almost criminal.
    Yes , there will be many questions asked of you and where is the MMS hiding , surely they will have to shoulder responsibility in this horrific disaster.

    June 17, 2010 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  2. Richard Miller in Montana

    CNN, I am no big defender of any oil company and have worked for the big ones in refineries but, to see the responsible do nothing flakes, line up all 535 of these righteous whiners from Congress and see just how many of them had one company or another in their back pockets. Start there with the blame game and you'll have something to report.

    June 17, 2010 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  3. NRMD

    Why BP failed to stop the leak. They are contacting lawyers more than engineers to close the gap. It is American culture that we contact lawyers more than anyone when something goes wrong. For healthcare decisions we contact insurance companies than doctors. With 200 lawsuits pending, they will be more busy with lawyers than trying to stop the leak. So the pollution and damage will continue for a long time. SAD SAD SAD.

    June 17, 2010 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  4. Biased

    As a member of neither party I watched those hearings today and it seemed it was not about asking questions of Hayward but of piling on further blame on BP than they already have and further ridiculing a man they don't like. How many times have we listened to the WH or Pelosi or republicans when in charge who said " I can't comment on that while an investigation is being conducted." Why is that line so disgusting now for Hayward when they use it themselves all the time? I am not defending BP by any means for their actions, but just how many times do we have to hear they are guilty and responsible when we have had 50+ days of it already? We all know they are responsible.....can we please switch the coverage to the cleanup, what the US govt. is doing to help, has Obama waived the Jones Act yet, whether those with innovative ideas or products are being called on to the marshes etc., and not just "BP is to blame" 24 hours a day? Please!

    June 17, 2010 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  5. The reality is...

    Stupak and his cronies were the ones who looked absurd and ridiculous. Tony Hayward looked calm and collected and very patient as he had to bear with these twits making their moronic," holier than thou" accusations. Why don't these overpaid bogus "public servants" get off their cans and help with the cleanup instead of wasting our taxpayer dollars reaming out Hayward? Run these jerks out in November .... oh November will you ever come?

    June 17, 2010 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  6. enough

    BP is run by a bafoon, jail time

    June 17, 2010 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  7. George of the jungle

    while both democrats and repo postured and made noises of comdemnation to BP The president played hard ball and got 20 billion dollars for compensation and thats only the beginning. We should not be apologizing like the repo senator did but continually bashing BP doesnt get us anywhere. That's why we have such a great president. After all the noise he delivers

    June 17, 2010 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  8. norma

    I have a new found appreciation for Bart Stupak.

    June 17, 2010 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  9. DJ

    Absurd commentary from Congress, with < 20% approval rating, a bunch of tax cheats, and deal makers behind closed doors. All grandstanding, no real intent to help solve the crisis. LMAO

    June 17, 2010 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  10. Jason Goulet

    I guess Stupak has NEVER seen a hearing where a politician is the one being grilled!!! Same thing happens.

    June 17, 2010 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  11. NOT

    Not nearly as absurd and ridiculous as obama's moratorium on drilling, pure ignorance.

    June 17, 2010 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  12. Obama the liar

    Stupaks cave in on healthcare was absurb and ridiculous. He and America got played by Obama.

    June 17, 2010 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  13. Ben

    Yes, Mr. Stupak. But, the Republicans look ridiculous for objecting to $20 billion escow that President Obama made BP pay. The new GOP is now "GOBP".

    June 17, 2010 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
  14. Rev MH Talbot

    So Tony didn't remember working on the rig and telling people what to do??
    Are you daft. he's the CEO! I doubt he could of found the rig on a map! He does not run the day to day operations at any of the gas stations ether!
    If you asked any of the Senators about the tire wear the the postal rigs here in town would they of had a answer?

    June 17, 2010 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  15. Marilynn

    If Hayward had been given the answers in advance, instead of being sandbagged, he could have done the research and had the answers. Seems like Congress is the gang that can't govern straight.

    June 18, 2010 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  16. Southern

    When Obama sent in the AG with his "Swat Team" of lawyers and threatened criminal action while the disaster was still going on, that was the end of complete cooperation. BP has lawyers too......Stupak should know that. The fact he doesn't, seems to mean he was a bad lawyer, too.

    June 18, 2010 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  17. BenH

    NO, our administration is absurd and ridiculous!!!! BP is the scapegoat and should not be the total focus of this horrible event. The press have fell right into the ploy.

    Gov. Jindal is the only one acting like a real leader.

    June 18, 2010 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  18. Steve851

    Without in any way defending BP, Congress came across as absurd at the hearing. In the main, the congressman just did alot of meaningless grandstanding. Hayward came across as sympathetic. That's how pathetic our Congress is.

    June 18, 2010 12:20 am at 12:20 am |

    How is this IDIOT Stupidpak qualified to do anything but sell his vote to the highest bidder? He now wants to use BP's $20 Bn "escrow account", which was outright stolen from shareholders and pensioners, to fund Obamacare!! Barton was 100% right – this was a thug shakedown by Obama to create a government slush fund. Hello blatant socialism.

    Defeat ALL Dem candidates in November and in 2012. Save our country.

    June 18, 2010 12:23 am at 12:23 am |

    Why after receiving 800 warnings from MMS British Petroleum was allowed to continue operations??? Clear case of corruption. Shut BP in US waters down.

    June 18, 2010 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  21. John D.

    we have a mms and interior department under suspicion a houston rep barton apologizing to bp bp requesting a specific judge to handle the empending 200 lawsuits on file and the countless more to be addressed haward snubbing the congressional hearing and comititing perjury in the one statement he answered no difference drilling near norway or the gulf knowing it is mandatory for the aquistic test to be performed and checked off by the company before he could ever recieve the go ahead to complete the well I guess bp does own the gulf they own the feds the state and the ppl in region or at least think they do its about time they relize what U.S.A. Justice is all about.....

    June 18, 2010 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  22. You

    I think that it was the greedy politicians that looked powerless and that was kinda funny.

    June 18, 2010 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  23. Renea

    The people on the gulf need someone to defend them because when you are dealing with a big oli company or any big corporation for that matter they have lawyers defending them and they are trying to keep all the money in their pocket they can.

    June 18, 2010 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
  24. A.B.

    The truth is this: Tony Hayward is absurd and his excuses and empty apologies are ridiculous. Hayward kept claiming that employee safety was his first concern in the face of several disasterous events at BP which resulted in employee injuries and deaths. Hayward is the face of BP and is a poster child for all that is wrong with the corporate world of today. This man is exceedingly smug, arrogant and very disingenious. He lacks integrity and compassion. President Obama and Congress should really get tough on this guy and make him fully accountable to the American people.

    June 18, 2010 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  25. Kitchen Police

    Drill baby drill, spill baby spill. Innocent life destroyed because of greed.

    June 18, 2010 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
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