Even Fox News rejects Mike Pence’s claims on Gulf oil spill
Hoosier Congressman Mike Pence took to the floor of the House of Representatives to demand an investigation into what happened on April 20, 2010. But he’s not interested in what caused the Deep Horizon oil rig to explode – he wants to know how he can blame the Obama administration:
“The American people deserve to know why the administration was slow to respond, why necessary equipment was not immediately on hand in the area and why the president did not fully deploy cabinet-level federal officials until he spoke at the White House on April 28th.”
I want to make one thing clear: Pence isn’t one of the handful of conservatives pushing the line that the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is “Obama’s Katrina.” That would be too moderate for the former talk radio host. Instead, ”Pence asserted that Obama’s response time was slow compared to Bush’s response [to Hurricane Katrina] in 2005.”
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and other Democrats have condemned these kind of remarks – and Pence’s remarks specifically. But it turns out that Mike Pence’s wild allegations are too much for his fellow Republicans.
The most thorough response came from Fox News host Jane Skinner, who was armed with the facts and refused to let Karl Rove get away with baseless allegations about a delayed response from the Obama administration. She told Rove that “the national response team was activated and later that day the President convened a meeting in the Oval Office with all those involved.” (Watch the video of their exchange here.)
Minnesota’s Republican Governor (and 2012 Presidential hopeful) Tim Pawlenty told ABC News that the government “is responding to the best of their abilities.”
Fox News host Bill O’Reilly called the politicization of the spill “insane”, and asked, “What could they have done? Are you gonna put Obama in a dive suit and send him down there with a little rake?”
My favorite, though, was Pence’s former colleague in the House, Joe Scarborough, who called the oil spill-Katrina analogy “completely obscene”, and went on to say, “Anybody that draws that analogy is an idiot.”
I can’t find anything to argue with there.
(Video & text of Pence’s remarks below the cut.)
“The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is an ongoing tragedy, and the American people deserve action to protect our Gulf and they deserve answers.
“The American people deserve to know what happened on April 20th, and Congress should investigate it thoroughly.
“The American people deserve to know why the administration was slow to respond, why necessary equipment was not immediately on hand in the area and why the president did not fully deploy cabinet-level federal officials until he spoke at the White House on April 28th.
“Lastly, the American people deserve answers for a pathway toward energy independence. There would be those in this country who would exploit this ongoing disaster to deny the American people more access to American oil that but the American people know better.
“The pathway toward energy independence is environmentally responsible expansion of domestic drilling for oil and natural gas. It’s more wind and solar and nuclear and more conservation.
“Republicans are determined to get the American people the answers about what happened on April 20th, about the slow federal response and to give the American people answers and a pathway toward energy independence that uses ‘all of the above.'”