Nov. 8, 2011: Markey: BP, Halliburton, Transocean Blocking Discussion of Oil Spill Reports

CEOs Avoid Congressional Testimony, Now Moving to Block Court Discussion of Major Findings on Disaster

WASHINGTON (November 8, 2011) – Last week, BP, Halliburton and Transocean failed to appear before the House Natural Resources Committee to discuss the U.S. government’s Joint Investigative Team report on their companies’ involvement in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Yesterday the companies revealed their complete disregard for the JIT and other official government investigations on the disaster by filing a motion to block their use in any civil lawsuits against the companies, according to an article by the Associated Press.
Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), the Ranking Democratic Member of the House Natural Resources Committee, continues to press for the CEOs of the three companies appear before the committee, today decried this new action by the companies responsible for the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history.
“Whether it’s Congress or courtrooms, these companies are trying to whitewash away this dark period in our nation’s environmental history. It’s not enough for BP, Halliburton and Transocean to avoid talking to Congress about these oil spill reports, they don’t want anyone in the courts talking about them either,” said Rep. Markey.

The three companies filed motions late Monday in federal court in New Orleans, according to the AP. The three companies are seeking to block the inclusion of the JIT report and the comprehensive analysis issued by the National Commission on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling in any civil proceedings against the companies, said the AP.
Last Wednesday, after Rep. Markey had pushed for the CEOs from the three companies to appear before the committee to discuss the report, the heads of these companies did not appear for the hearing. Rep. Markey made a motion at the hearing to subpoena the witnesses when they did not appear. Following a call for members of the committee to appear for votes, Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) issued a “motion to table”, which essentially ends debate and does not allow an up-or-down vote on the subpoena. Republicans on the committee voted unanimously to protect the CEOs from testifying by a 17-13 vote, with all Democrats present voting to move forward on the subpoenas.


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