Republican, Under Pressure, Backpedals From Apology to BP
By JACKIE CALMES
June 17, 2010
Representative Joe L. Barton had to be truly sorry by the time he apologized for his apology on Thursday.
In the four hours between his televised apology to BP — for what he called a $20 billion “shakedown” by President Obama for loss claims in the gulf oil spill — and his apology for that apology, Mr. Barton, a Republican from Texas, had been pummeled in the blogosphere, assailed by Democratic Party operatives and Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., and, in the blow that landed, threatened by Republican leaders with being yanked from the party’s top seat on the powerful House energy committee.
...“Who would the G.O.P. put in charge of overseeing the energy industry & Big Oil if they won control of Congress? Yup, u guessed it — JOE BARTON.”
...The shakedown, in the eyes of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, which monitors campaign contributions to lawmakers, is actually the pitches by lawmakers for oil industry donations.
Individuals and political action committees in the oil and gas industry have been Mr. Barton’s biggest source of campaign money, it reported, contributing $1.4 million since the 1990 election cycle.