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Gibson repudiates Barton, raises with Price

Jun 22, 2010 9:59 pm
From Jimmy Vielkind in Capitol Confidential:
Chris Gibson, a Republican hoping to unseat Rep. Scott Murphy [in District 20, which covers Greene and Columbia counties], forcefully repudiated remarks by a sitting Republican congressman who apologized to BP CEO Tony Hayward for what he saw as a “shakedown” being perpetuated by the Obama administration. Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, made the comments during a House hearing last week. He said he was “ashamed” of President Barack Obama’s call for BP to set aside a $20 billion “slush fund” for claims from the Gulf oil spill. The comments were widely criticized by Democrats, and Barton later apologized for his use of the word “shakedown.” “Just as I believe in individual responsibility, I believe in corporate responsibility. They need to be held responsible for their actions, so as we go forward, we absolutely need to continue towards that end: holding BP responsible for this. Now, we do need to take a hard look at how we do this drilling,” Gibson, a retired Army colonel from Kinderhook, said Monday. “That was an outrageous comment by Mr. Barton and I disassociate myself from him. Again, I lead in with the fact that I believe in individual responsibility and I believe in corporate responsibility.” His rebuke came a day before a scheduled fundraiser this evening in Washington with three incumbent GOP congressman — including one who has also called the claims fund a “shakedown.” The event — for which political actions committees are asked to contribute $1,000 — is headlined by Reps. Peter King, R-N.Y., Geoff Davis, R-Ky. and Tom Price, R-Ga. Price, chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee, issued a statement last week. A Gibson spokesman did not immediately explain the apparent contradiction. Gibson later issued a statement saying “I believe in individual responsibility and corporate responsibility and that BP should be held accountable for their actions. However the central issues in this campaign are to grow the private sector economy and create jobs followed by reigning in spending so we can secure a promising future for residents in NY20.” Read the entire story in Capitol Confidential.