House Minority Leader John Boehner reportedly says he believes taxpayers should help pick up the tab for the BP oil cleanup.
"I think the people responsible in the oil spill — BP and the federal government — should take full responsibility for what's happening there," Boehner said at a recent press conference.
A spokesman for Boehner later told the Business Insider that "Boehner made a general statement about who is responsible for the spill, and the federal government oversight was clearly lacking, but he has said repeatedly that BP is responsible for the cost of the cleanup."
However, the Republican leader’s initial comments came in response to a question about whether he agreed with comments made by U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donohue, who said he opposes efforts to stick BP, a member of the Chamber, with the bill.
"It is generally not the practice of this country to change the laws after the game," Donohue said.
"Everybody is going to contribute to this clean up. We are all going to have to do it. We are going to have to get the money from the government and from the companies and we will figure out a way to do that."
In an address to the nation from the Oval Office on Tuesday night, eight weeks to the day after the catastrophic oil spill began destroying waterways, wildlife and a prized Gulf Coast way of life, President Barack Obama accused the oil giant of "recklessness" and vowed to "make BP pay."
"We will fight this spill with everything we've got for as long it takes," declared Obama, whose own presidency has been stumbling because of the gushing oil.
Meanwhile, BP will set aside $20 billion to pay the victims of the massive oil spill in the Gulf, senior administration officials said Wednesday, a move made under pressure by the White House as the company copes with causing the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history.
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