House GOP Leadership: Barton Was ‘Wrong’ On BP Apology — And Spill Is A ‘Natural Disaster’

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House Republican leadership has a strong message for Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX): You were wrong.

They also are rather strangely referring to the disastrous Gulf Coast oil spill as the “nation’s largest natural disaster.” (Emphasis added).

Barton apologized to BP this morning for the “tragedy” of its $20 billion fund to pay damage claims from the Gulf Coast oil spill. Barton has since apologized for apologizing to BP. Nonetheless, Reps. John Boehner (R-OH), Eric Cantor (R-VA), and Mike Pence (R-IN) released a joint statement this afternoon calling Barton’s original statements “wrong.”“Congressman Barton’s statements this morning were wrong.  BP itself has acknowledged that responsibility for the economic damages lies with them and has offered an initial pledge of $20 billion dollars for that purpose.”

Here’s the full statement:

The oil spill in the Gulf is this nation’s largest natural disaster and stopping the leak and cleaning up the region is our top priority.  Congressman Barton’s statements this morning were wrong.  BP itself has acknowledged that responsibility for the economic damages lies with them and has offered an initial pledge of $20 billion dollars for that purpose.

The families and businesspeople in the Gulf region want leadership, accountability and action from BP and the Administration.  It is unacceptable that, 59  days after this crisis began, no solution is forthcoming.  Simply put, the American people want all of our resources, time and focus to be directed toward stopping the spill and cleaning up the mess.

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