BP CEO Tony Hayward is testifying before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation. The meeting is chaired by Bart Stupak (D-MI). It is expected that the meeting will be interrupted throughout the morning for a series of House votes. You can watch the testimony live on CSPAN 3
10:07 – Henry Waxman (D-CA): BP’s corporate attitude can be best summed up as “Who cares.” BP has taken the most extreme risks.
10:12 – Joe Barton (R-TX): Is personally ashamed about what happened yesterday in the White House. It was a shakedown of BP and created a slush fund.
There is no question BP is liable for the damages. Barton apologizes for the Presidents behavior to Tony Hayward. (Is this really the GOP plan back to power apologizing to the CEO of a company that has destroyed large swath of our environment and economy.)
10:18 – Bart Stupak (D-MI) is really going to town. He is list corner cut after corner cut that lead up to the eventual disaster. Industry best practices were not followed. “We are not small people” and I’m sure you will get your life back with a golden parachute. (Nice digs at some of worst PR statements to come from BP executives.)
10:26 – Michael Burgess (R-TX) the picture developing is a series of bad choices on the part of BP that lead to this disaster. This was not pushing the limit of drilling technology. The failure to follow industry best practices lead to this.
10:30 – Ed Markey (D-MA): The escrow account is not a shakedown or a slush fund (in direct response to Barton’s attack on Obama). We need to ensure our citizens are protected. The “families in the gulf with be crushed financially unless we put this fund in place.”
10:36 – John Sullivan (R-OK): BP must carry the entire financial burden for this disaster and taxpayers should not pay a dime.
The administration is “exploiting” this disaster to push for cap and trade (news to me there.)
10:40 – John Dingell (D-MI): Reminds us that Hayward has had a string of incredibly stupid statements about the disaster. For example, people cleaning up the oil getting sick must be food poisoning.
10:45 – Marsha Blackburn (R-TN): While there are meaning problems with MMS the fault lies with BP. Puts much of the blame on the Obama administration.
10:50 – Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) pays testimony of from two women who lost their husbands thanks to the rig explosion.
10:52 – Phil Gingrey (R-GA) seems to mock claims that the disaster was caused by weak oversight from the Bush years. Why did the disaster not happen than and not a year and a half after Bush left office.
10:55 – Mike Doyle (D-PA) at nearly every turn BP cut corners.
11:00 – Parker Griffith (R-AL) the greatest environmental disaster is cigarettes (hmm… ok). Wants to remind people this will not be the worst thing to happen to America.
11:01 – Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) reads the waiver BP made people sign when they were first hiring people to do the clean up. People who were not jobless thanks to BP’s behavior.
11:13 – Peter Welch (D-VT) BP has one of the worst health and safety records in the world. The oil spill was foreseeable and avoidable.
11:22 – The opening statements are now over.
11:24 – a protester disturbs the meeting. She just got taken down by the police. Roughly four cops dragged her out of the room in what appeared to be handcuffs.
11:28 – BP CEO Tony Hayward: We agreed to create a $20 billion fund to play for clean up, the states, and claims. He promises to “make this right.” We will pay all legitimate claims.
11:33 – There are several votes taking place so the committee will be in recess until 12:00. At that point questioning of Hayward should begin.