June 17th, 2010
11:56 AM ET
13 years ago

White House responds to lawmakers comments on 'slush fund'

Washington (CNN) - The White House hit back hard at Texas Rep. Joe Barton’s comments Thursday that he is “ashamed” of how the White House has treated BP.

“What is shameful is that Joe Barton seems to have more concern for big corporations that caused this disaster than the fishermen, small business owners and communities whose lives have been devastated by the destruction,” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said in a statement. “Congressman Barton may think that a fund to compensate these Americans is a ‘tragedy’, but most Americans know that the real tragedy is what the men and women of the Gulf Coast are going through right now. Members from both parties should repudiate his comments.”

Filed under: Joe Barton • Obama administration • Robert Gibbs
soundoff (169 Responses)
  1. Joseph Rodgers

    after reading some of these comments, it only proves that some of you you just hate Obama regardless of what he does. It's people like you that make others think this isn't about policies and is more about race. So many of these comments blame the president for the same things his predecessor did, but you weren't on your high horse or soap box then. There's more that the president and the administration could have done to bring a desired result faster but if you're going to put all the country's woes on Obama then let's look at the policies of his predecessors. Get off it already some of you make me sick. BP is at fault for this mess but I must say they are being quite cooperative and have extended thier hands to help as much as possible and have taken more responsibility than previous culprits of similar disasters. Enough blaming and slander and lets do something productive to fix this. All of you who are complaining aren't helping the issue, get off your can and do something to help those in need unless you're too good for that, if that's the case you've only proven my point.

    June 17, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  2. Freeman S. Peach

    How much for an Ocean
    how much would you pay
    for the sand and the surf
    and the nice place to play
    How much for a seagull
    a turtle or fish
    how much for a stroll
    on the beach for a wish
    I hear 20 billion
    is the rate for the day
    I hear it will cover
    where our kids did once play
    Beaches covered in tar
    and our fish are all dead
    The marshes are ruined
    a nightmare of dread
    I think 20 billion
    is just a bit shy
    for the sand and the surf
    and an ever blue sky
    I don't think that their cash
    can pay for God's space
    where each organism
    has it's own special place
    I think 20 billion
    is just bit shy
    but if you've got a full 30
    we will sell you the sky
    Now forty is more
    hey we'll throw in a lake
    some mountains and meadows
    what more does it take
    This cannot end well
    no matter the price
    but we thank you BP
    for the thought was real nice
    In twenty years time
    we will see from this whim
    of our beautiful Gulf
    where we no longer swim

    June 17, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  3. phoenix86

    Barton is absolutely correct. Obama is acting like a thug when it comes to BP.

    June 17, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  4. Ms. White

    The next time a child toy or baby stroller is found defected, do not blame the company for the defect...blame the parents for buying the company's product. If the child dies, do not sue the company for wrongfull death or injuries, because that is want you are saying by not holding the company responsiable for thier faulty products or the goverment for having rules, standard and regulatons for making and selling defective products to american citizens.

    June 17, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  5. ajax

    Shouldn't there be a fund set up that the EPA should pay into for allowing BP to pour toxic dispersiants into the Gulf.This fund would be used to pay the medical bills by the workers trying to clean up this mess.And Obama could chip into this fund by donating all the money he received from BP for his campaign for the White House and his time in the Senate.

    June 17, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  6. Hendrik

    Republicans are disgusting "human" beings. All of them, no exceptions. None

    June 17, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  7. Leith

    Is this the same Barton that cosponsored the Domenici-Barton Energy Act of 2005? That's a big one that relieved big business of any responsibility for anything at any time except grabbing as much money as possible. Nice to see that Barton is "once bought stays bought."

    June 17, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  8. Not suprised

    Rep. Burton defending company and apologizing to BP is a slap on the people that voted for him. No wonder the American public is staying home and not voting because they do not trust politicians. You are a beneficiary and supporter of big oil companies so I am not surprised you feel sorry for BP. You should publicly apologize to the people of your state for your uncaring and selfish attitude. If I was you I will not run for reelection whenever that is because you have shown your true color. BP caused this leak because people like you let them by pass regulations, red tapes and voted for off shore drilling. To me this is a lie to the people of your state and to all the people that voted for you and the misery you have caused for the people of the Gulf Coast who have no idea you were tied to big oil companies.

    June 17, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  9. A. Goodwin

    BP can go stuff it, along with the rest of you who want to blame everything and anything on Dems/Obama! You tools let people DIE in Katrina...let them sit there and ROT and yet we are supposed to care what you say? I just love how some of you THUGS say that the government is extorting money...what a joke!!! I think you all need to go down to the south and start cleaning up and stop being a bunch of oil-kissers.

    June 17, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  10. Dano

    I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm ashamed that Joe Barton is a member of the US Congress. I hope voters in his home state remember his ignorant statements come election time.

    June 17, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  11. Chipster

    Glennis: For your information, they have appointed the person who handled the 9/11 fund. He did a pretty decent job with that. I'm getting tired of people who know exactly what should be done differently when they aren't the ones responsible. Everybody's an expert when they aren't being judged.

    June 17, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  12. ac

    I think that Mr. Barton isn't right. Who does he want to foot the bill? Us?
    The taxpayer? I don't understand what the heck he is trying to say. It is true that BP has shareholders and many people are going to suffer, as a result of BP's lack of responsability. A lot of Mutual Funds are going to lose money and many 401k because of it. However, BP still needs to pay for taken short cuts that they were not suppose too. Therefore, Barton is right and the President was rigth on this one.

    June 17, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  13. kelvin

    How stupid are you americans!!!
    When are you ever Gonna get Over your useless selves. That is the last country i would ever think of coming to!!!!
    Last on my list.
    Obama is doing a good job.As long as he is black,nothing he does is gonna be good enough for those with skin problems. Get over your uselessness skin proide and contribute to the development of your own country...Bp is not his company , they have been operating before he was a president,they fuck up they pay for it. Obama is just doing his job,which is done well.do you want him to jump in the ocean and plug the leak?
    If not, shut up and start helping your country...
    Shame on You Americans ,Smartten Up people please.
    People like you make me sick

    June 17, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  14. ac

    Barton was wrong and the President was right on this call.

    June 17, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  15. Dano

    John, PA – if you want to comment on an article, how about you actually make your comment relevent to the subject rather than go off on a senseless rant?

    June 17, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |

    This treatment of our President is totally treasonist in my eyes. Perhaps because I am a retired military person, I look at the way our President is being disrespected with dismay. The Office of the President of the United States of America deserves our highest respect. I understand that the Republicans and Tea Party Klan members hate the fact that a black man is in control of THEIR COUNTRY, but to disrespect the Office of the Presidency by calling OUR President names and showing disrespectable pictures only shows the world how shallow Americans can be. I did not agree with everything GWB did but out of respect for the office I never once even thought of going out in public and protesting with name calling, guns and distorted pictures of the president to make my point. The truth is, these Republicans, Tea Party Klan members, Militia only desire is to bring this black man down, and that's a shame. This man is OUR President but we allow HATRED to keep him for making progress to help OUR country. The Republicans in office made up their minds before President Obama even raised his right hand that he getting NO SUPPORT. They have done everything they can to impede any progress he has presented and the sad part is the President is trying to help ALL AMERICANS. Listen to the Tea Party Klan, Sara Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Glen Beck any republican in public view – they all talk about what is wrong with what President Obama is doing but NO ONE offers solutions or answers. You can feel the hatred, it is thick as the oil washing ashore in the Gulf, When the Tea Party Klan say THEY WANT THEIR COUNTRY BACK – they mean they want a white man back in charge because they feel that no MINORITY should be in power. They feel that the WHITE men are the only ones that should run the United States of America. If they and Arizona truly are tired for the workings of the Government – WHERE WAS ALL THE HELL RASING WHEN GWB WAS IN OFFICE FOR 8 YRS!!!! The sad part is these same people had no problem putting up with GWB spending recklessly, starting two wars with no way to pay, no immigration reform, etc., but now that we have a DEMOCRAT in office all of a sudden these issue have become unbearable and have got to be looked at NOW! If these thinigs were so vitally important – why didn't GEORGE W BUSH fix the issue within his 8yr term. This President has been in office 1 1/2years and people expect his to change the world but he has no support and not only fight the Republicans and protesters spewing LIES

    June 17, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  17. Matt

    Barton is no worse that Obama. Obama was bought by Freddie, Fanny and Countrywide.... He got more money from them in 3 years than ANYONE ELSE (including Dodd) – Over $160,000.

    Obama's friends at Freddie and Fanny are the main culprits that brought our economy down. Why is he attacking and regulating everyone BUT those responsible?

    It's easy to attack Barton for his comments. BP is liable for the damages. But, if the funds go into a fund controlled by the president's men, then it can be called a slush fund. Obama's stimulus is being used as a democratic party slush fund ($560M to Stupak's district for his vote on healthcare....).

    June 17, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  18. FactCheck

    Oh you silly wing-nuts. At least Barton had the guts to say out loud what every single Republican politician in the country has been thinking behind the scenes.

    June 17, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  19. Chipster

    The $75 MILLION cap is for oil "spills." This is NOT an oil spill and we should stop calling it an oil spill. This is a ruptured oil well that is flooding the ocean, just like a volcano floods the valley below. This is an oil flood, deluge, torrent – not a spill. A spill is when a ship sinks and leaks oil or when a tanker breaks open. This is a rupture in the earth's crust that is an endless flow.

    Stop calling this a leak!

    June 17, 2010 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
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