Skip to comments.GOP lawmaker demands Barton step down from top committee spot
Posted on 06/17/2010 11:14:06 AM PDT by DukeBillie
A Republican lawmaker from a district affected by the oil spill called on Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) to step down as the ranking member of his committee.
Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), whose Pensacola district is among the most-impacted areas in the Gulf by the oil spill, condemned Barton for apologizing to BP CEO Tony Hayward during a committee meeting on Thursday.
"I condemn Mr. Bartons statement. Mr. Bartons remarks are out of touch with this tragedy and I feel his comments call into question his judgment and ability to serve in a leadership on the Energy and Commerce Committee," MIller said in a statement. "He should step down as ranking member of the Committee.
Barton apologized to Hayward during opening remarks at a hearing this morning, telling Hayward that he was "ashamed" by President Barack Obama's effort to force BP to create a $20 billion fund in escrow to pay out damages to victims of the oil spill.
It is a tragedy of the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown, in this case a $20 billion dollar shakedown, Barton said.
Miller took Barton to task.
I am shocked by Congressman Joe Bartons reprehensible comments that the government should apologize for the shakedown of BP," he said. "BP has caused the greatest ecological and environmental disaster our nation has ever seen. They are the responsible party and they should pay for losses and damages, not the taxpayer. I am optimistic and hopeful that BP acted in good faith by opening the $20 million escrow account, as several of us have requested."
Republicans have already begun to distance themselves from Barton's remarks.
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said he disagreed with Barton during his weekly press conference.
"I have said since the beginning that BP ought to be held responsible for every dime of this tragedy," Boehner said. "And they ought to be held accountable to stop the leak and get it cleaned up as soon as possible.
Another one of Barton's colleagues, Rep. Michael Burgess (R), who was a top member of the subcommittee hosting Hayward today, also disavowed Barton's remarks.
"He made it quite clear he was speaking only for himself," he said.
Good lawdy, R’s! GET SOME BA**S!!!!!
And thus, the tepid cowardice of Congresscritters is once again in full display. You could not find a more corrupt, self-serving, cowardly and utterly useless collection of 500 people anywhere than this pack of snakes. We would be soooo better off just selecting our Congress by random from census lists or a telephone book.
Wow... I never heard of this Ubama ally Jeff Miller, but that scumbag has to go.
Jeff Miller and Michael Burgess don’t seem to be able to recognize the truth when they hear it and should be removed from office ASAP!
When a Republican calls a spade a spade. The Rinos organize a circular firing squad.
Even though Barton may have been right, now is not the time to say it! Now is the time to cement the perception in the public’s mind that 0bama is an incompetent manager. Now is the time, when the Eugene Robinsons and Olbermans feel free to opennly critique 0bama, to dogpile. Place impossible expectations on 0bama and go crazy when he fails to meet them. Use the Alinsky Rules against the Radicals. This was an unwelcome distraction and manna to 0bama.
He's too stupid to notice that BP paid Zer0 campaign contributions to be one of his favorite green corporations, it was going to get them soooo much.
Jeff, ol' buddy, ol' pal, Joe Barton is so much more in touch with these tragedies (I refer to the Obama administration as well as the BP oil spill) that it is YOU who should step down.
Tell me, Jeff, ol' buddy, ol' pal, you do realize that, if the hole is going to be plugged, it is BP that will do it, don't you? And did you at any time ask the BP executive what you and the federal government could do to help them plug the hole? Wouldn't that have been the best way to serve your constituents?
The taxpayers are going to be stuck for the bill for this entire cleanup if BP doesn’t take responsibility for the mess *they* created through their shoddy and unsafe (and finally murderous) practices.
If we take Barton’s suggestion and don’t hold them accountable - and instead *apologize to them* - are you okay with having the taxpayers pick up the billions of dollars of cost?
Or do we just do nothing on the Federal level, and leave it to the States and localities?
If BP isn’t made to pay for the damage they are causing, then they get all of the profits for drilling, and they give the problems to the taxpayers. It’s like reverse Socialism.
Are you OK with ceding the President powers which he clearly does NOT have under the US Constitution?
EXACTLY! I am from New Orleans. What is happening to the coast is unbelieveable HOWEVER, we have a legal system. This is yet another example of 0bama seizing control of an industry.
Republicans putting money (i.e., power) over principles is what gives ammunition to those who claim there is no significant diffence between the parties. I don’t buy that argument, but these calculated responses by Republicans to a statement of clear support for the rule of law provides credible rebuttal.
Miller gets it. You can oppose the escrow account, but BP does not deserve any apology. Barton is a fool, he is throwing a life preserver to the Dems.
I wouldn't get on Burgess' case. The quote is brief and without context. I'm suspicious that it was cherry-picked. Instead, I'd wager it was delivered in response to a question like "Does Joe Barton speak for the Republican party"?
And that there is much missing context to his remarks...
They should certainly be held accountable for the situation.
But Barton was also right -- Obama had no right or authority to shake them down like a two-bit mobster. I am embarrassed as an American citizen to see the President behaving in this manner.
BP can and should be held accountable and liable. But in the proper way.