Ron Paul: Why I Voted Against Giving Subpoena Power to Obama’s BP Commission

Ron Paul explains why he was the only Congressman to vote against giving subpoena power to Obama’s BP Commission.

Channel: Fox News
Host: Stuart Varney
Date: 06/24/2010


Stuart Varney: The White House is digging in as the president’s drilling ban gets drilled, again, in court. But the White House today is not giving up despite this latest legal setback.

Ken Salazar: We want to keep the moratorium in place until we get to a level where we can provide a sense of safety to the American people that drilling can, in fact, continue.

Stuart Varney: Well, the president wants his oil spill commission to have a final say on when, or if, drilling can continue. That commission, by the way, is chock full of environmentalists. And now that commission has subpoena power. My next guest, the only one to vote against that move, is Texas Republican Ron Paul. Congressman, as always, welcome to the program.

Ron Paul: Thank you, nice to be with you.

Stuart Varney: Now, you voted against giving subpoena power to this commission. But, as you know, in the past, the commission that looked into Three Mile Island, and the commission that looked into the assassination of President Kennedy, did have that subpoena power. Don’t you think that this oil spill rises to the level of requiring teeth; subpoena power?

Ron Paul: Are you sure those commissions were set up by executive order, or could they have been set up by the Congress? Usually these commissions are set up by the Congress. My objection is to the process. I am very concerned about giving the executive branch too much power. If the Congress had set up the commission, that would have been a different story. But this was done by executive order and it is a blank check, and I just do not think that is the process. We should be very, very cautious of giving subpoena power to Congress or to a commission.

Stuart Varney: I know you’re also concerned of the people who are on that commission. Because as you can see – we’re scrolling it up on the screen right now – most of them are environmentalist. I don’t believe there is a driller up or a serious oil person on that commission. But, again, to return to your point about executive power, overreach maybe. Again, doesn’t this rise to the level of such a disaster, that maybe the federal government really has to just get in there and do it?

Ron Paul: Well, that’s generally the case in this city; whenever there is a crisis, it’s always so great that you have everybody rise to such a level, that you can put aside the Constitution. This is a time when you should be particularly protective of the Constitution, whether it’s 9/11 or whatever. Just look at what we did after 9/11 with the PATRIOT Act and other things. I think we go to fast. Sometimes we even go to war because it rises to a certain level. We went to war against Iraq and Afghanistan without a declaration of war, because people say, “It’s an emergency, weapons of mass destruction”. So we should be very cautious. We can work this through, but to reject our rules and reject the process I think is a very dangerous precedent to set.

Stuart Varney: It is going to happen, obviously. I mean, we can have views on whether it’s constitutional or a breach of executive power, but it is going to happen. Do you think there is any doubt that this commission will rule that you’ve got to delay a long time before you return to drilling, if at all? Any doubt?

Ron Paul: Well, it’s hard to say because if the environmentalists had their way, that would be one thing. But there is also the fact that the large corporations and governments aren’t always against each other. I think sometimes they work together. And, you know, BP is all for Cap and Trade and they get a lot of benefits from our military protection in the Persian Gulf. So who knows what will come of it? So we definitely need to find out, and you know my position has been that they are 100% responsible for all those who are injured and we do need to know. But we don’t want to just keep giving more power to the president and say, “Oh, executive order”. You know, “neat little deal.”

Stuart Varney: Congressman Ron Paul, always a pleasure. Thanks for joining us again, sir. Appreciate it.

Ron Paul: Thank you.

  • [url=]mulberry handbags[/url] dbpa

  • jon

    i am for Ron Paul for president,he is the only politician,that i respect,and i have yet to hear lies, as i do when 99% of them open their mouths.i fear for my country, my way of life,my healthcare,as im aging now. i cannot believe,what my country has become in such a short time.i pray every day that we will be up to stopping this free fall into a 3rd world hole.i hope every one will vote in nov.,and in 2012. GOD BLESS RON PAUL<GOD BLESS AMERICA< HAVE A GREAT 4TH OF JULY AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL !!!


  • History

    Make a difference.. let more people see this video.. go and vote it up on reddit

    You need to sign up to vote it up.. but hundred of thousand of people will see it as a result if it reaches the front page!

  • Yvonne

    Let me clarify. The commision was set up by the executive branch and congress already gave this commision subpoena power. Where are the checks and balances? None of the three branches is supposed to have too much power.
    But it’s past tense. They already have the commision.

  • jon

    So of course Ron Paul is going to introduce legislation in congress that will subpoena BP from the congress instead of the executive branch right. Other
    wise if he doesn’t his excuse sounds like the dog ate my homework.

    • Yvonne

      Jon the executive order went through. Why would he introduce legislation from congress?
      It’s too late for that.

    • Nullstorm

      Jon, you lost your chance to have Ron Paul take care of things when you didn’t vote for him in 2008. Id rather have the dog eat my homework than my vote.

  • What good is it that the executive branch full of people who don’t have experience in the oil company will do to remedy the problem in the Gulf?
    Nothing it’s congress who makes a commission not the president.

  • Ann

    Paul’s first argument for his no vote is that both commissions for Three Mile Island and Kennedy’s Assassination were set up by Congress, not executive order. This is incorrect. President Jimmy Carter appointed the Kemeny Commission to investigate Three Mile Island ( and LBJ set up the commission to investigate Kennedy’s assassination. I think we should be clear on the facts.

    • GB

      Were they indeed by Executive Order? Just checking.

    • B.D.Harper

      He said, “You should check if they were. Typically those types of commissions are set up by Congress.”

      The latter statement is true regardless of the implications of the first one.

      • 1111cb

        oil spill commission is definately by executive order. to clarify how my posts fit- there is a rule of law

        This commision is appointed by 1 man and its less likely they will investigate the executive branch. there is inherent bias.

        Ed Markey from Congress is asking BP and the Coast Guard point blank about the dispersants and cannot get answers. Why????
        EPA ordered BP to stop use- BP replied we do not have the power to stop them. Why ???
        These are USA sovereign waters- the president and Congress need to step down as a polite lawyers who will make sure clients get compensated years from now and save our country from BP under law – we need to prevent crop failure, health problems, animal illness, microbial failure and water poisoning now.

        Rescue first, even if the case will not be so clean to lay blame.
        threaten with the terrorist act

        I currently have NO faith in any commission as I believe they are diverting attention from action. But legally- Congress should appoint.

        The last Hayward grilling was ridiculous- the obvious question everyone sidestepped- so who was responsible for the decision, who does know and get them in for grilling. My CEO in big incidents would have that data at least after an incident. They kept the questions on the side of allowing him to sidestep and just look bad, then BP fired him as the fall guy. Look at the big picture.

        I am no lawyer, no oil expert, no engineer- but every prediction I made to my Congress people and related about this spill has passed. Its about logic. When you try to fight this like Jindal is and the locals- you realize no one is really trying too hard.

        Unless we the people step up now and demand law today- and demand BP to halt use when ordered by the USA to stop, Ron Paul will be leading a much different country in the future.

  • 1111cb

    This is all great to drag out a legal case, investigate and debate. We have an emergency now about to threaten the Gulf and Eastern Coast. The EPA finally demanded BP stop use of Corexit. do a search on hurricanes, toxic rain cross referenced to the spill and skip the scare blogs.

    BP stated we have no right to tell them to stop.

    WE DO HAVE RIGHTS AND ITS OUR WATERS. THIS IS AN ACT OF A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION IF THEY PERSIST. We need teeth to stop BP now or Corexit will kill all the microbial life we depend on, wildlife, crops, cause cancer/leukemias and be dispersed up the Coast through rain.

    please research this yourself and if you agree call every politician you can to get the dispersant stopped. They are trying to keep us occupied with this legal stuff as the country is killed. I do not know if from ignorance, stupidity, greed, or worse and at this point don’t care- but the dispersant is worse than the oil.

  • JON

    Ron Paul is an average guy like you and me” no he is not… he is a full of himself
    doctor who thinks he is a scientist but is not. Doctors not only have no mathematical training in college their tests are multiple choice. Ron Paul like so many other full of themselves doctors is not very bright. This is typical of his wacky over the top Utopian foolishness, there is no viable reason to not issue a subpoena to get a the bottom of what BP knows to what led to this crisis. They
    are saying that the sea floor of the horizon site is damaged as well as the well casing that was not properly cemented into place. There are ROV footage of oil
    leaks in the seabed, even though oil seepage is natural in the ocean there is little
    information to what extent is the flow rate. A subpoena is necessary even though BP will try and hide the truth. I wish Ron Paul and his stupid son will
    be terminated in the upcoming elections, it is obvious that the GOP stands behind big oil no matter how reckless they are. As an engineer I can clearly
    state Ron Paul’s ideologies are dangerous for America and need to be put to

    • Mark

      Reply to JON’s comments on Ron Paul.

      Jon, first allow me to make it clear… I’m not a supporter of Ron Paul or Rand Paul. However, I do support many of his views, especially when it comes to the Constitution.

      Jon, you had a lot to say. However, you were born with two ears and one mouth. Therefore you need to do a bit more “listening”. Did you “hear” what Ron Paul said was the reason he didn’t vote in favor of it? Because the commission was appointed by President Obama of the Executive Branch which doesn’t have that authority under the Constitution. Rather, the commission should have been appointed by the Congress, as per the Constitution.
      The MAJORITY of American citizens are fed up with EXECUTIVE ORDERS of the Executive Branch and its total disregard for the Constitution which every President took an oath to support and defend. Obama certainly isn’t the first, but at his current pace, he’s on target to set a new record. Executive Orders are nothing more than a fancy means to circumvent the Constitution by taking authority away from Congress and giving it to the President. Executive Orders should be illegal, however when you appoint the right Justices to the high court you get whatever outcome you ask for. The Founding Fathers made certain for a balance of power in the federal government. For over 100 years our government has been hijacked with the help of Executive Orders.

      BOTTOM LINE: Executive Orders will prove to be straw that breaks the camels back. This questionable “tool” of the President is destroying the sovereignty of our nation. It needs to stop or else we’re all doomed as tyranny will soon after sprout up its ugly head… then it’ll be too late.

      • 1111cb

        want to clarify one point- unfortunately the Russian scientist part and oil rain Youtube are a hoax and diverting from the truth of acid rain. Particles aerosolize and can be carried by high winds- volcanic dust travels worldwide. It rained ash on us in Oregon from a volcano in Washington state.;topic=9404.0

        State testing showing up toxic levels already and people are reporting getting ill. Its nice to that our lawmakers will ensure later relatives get compensated yrs from now, but having our crops, animals and health are preferable to a big check when the farms and people are dying or losing their homes and health. This area will be unliveable like the dust bowl and a mass migration will be happening in an already stressed economy.

        Not sure why not to like my post- if our government tells a company to stop dumping a chemical in our sovereign waters, why are they not terrorist criminals? Louisiana just arrested a guy dumping medical chemicals down a storm drain.
        If he is in jail and BP is dumping a dispersant that causes this on a massive scale then why is our government treaing them like we have no ability but to politely keep asking them to stop. BP replies that we have no power to stop them.
        Are we a nation of laws or not?
        Are we a sovereign nation who owns our borders or not?

    • GB

      Being and engineer doesn’t qualify you to say anything about Ron Paul’s ideologies. Sheesh.

  • Forlo12345

    He’s just an average person like you and me. Which is precisely the reason why we need someone like him in office because he is a man of the people, for the people….very unlike the crony corporatists, fascists, and power hungry politicians stupid people keep electing.

  • zootcst

    Wind generators pay for themselves after 10 years, but they have to be replaced every 6. Ethanol is a great alternative until you realize how high the price of corn is going to get. There are new solar options just around the bend and our technology is getting better every day. The fact is, we need oil for now. Hopefully not for long.

    • Libertarian777

      zootcst… CORN ethanol is NOT a ‘great alternative’.

      The amount of gasoline, water and electrical energy used (in the tractors, harvesters, trucks and processing mills) to make corn ethanol, not to mention its lower energy density than gasoline makes it a worse net polluter than oil extraction and refining.

      Cane sugar (as the Brazilians use) is much more efficient at producing ethanol. Florida has perfect weather for it, but, thanks to government tariffs (on sugar) and subsidies (on corn) that will never happen.


    As far as alternatives, we face a basic and simple fact. And that is as long as oil exists, there will never be an alternative. Not until it’s all gone.

    Before the oil is gone someone would have to invent a very ez to make machine which used as it’s source of energy something so common like grass clippings and he would have to give the instructions on how to make it away…until then…oil.
    Otherwise any technology developed would be kept under wraps until…oil is gone.

  • rba718

    I agree with the bit of the feds though, I wish they would do more but seeing things like that Oil Act, they really have no control. Obama said in his speech that they’ve had complete control of the spill since day 1 yet the feds have no jurisdiction there. BP assumes complete control. This is what happens when you tout the “uncompromising” power of the free market under the guise of deregulation.

  • rba718

    You would have to be an idiot to blame anyone but the oil companies for drilling so deeply instead of investing in cleaner alternatives, like we’ve been talking about for decades now. It is especially no one else’s fault but BP’s that they’re safety was so lackluster.

    • 1111cb

      its not the deep drilling that is the problem.
      BP has over 7000 safety violations
      no other company comes close

      BP drills into high methane explosive pockets of oil that other comapnies avoid.

      The real reason there is a ban on drilling is
      1-politics – although I agree with enviromentally sounder alternatives-this is not the way
      2- BP may have destabilized the Gulf seabed and tapped into a methane lake that is described as bigger than the Grand Canyon or Mt Everest.
      small gas bubble blew up the rig. Big lake will possibly explode and …

      if not for BP, it would be safe to continue deep water drilling into low methane content oil reserves.

      So now is BP in Alaska being allowed to currently drill into a high methane pocket oil reserve?????

  • Wayne

    Kickass Ron Paul..out with the liars!


    Here’s what my reply would be to that subpeona…It was you same retards that made it so that we HAD to drill that deep…see why THAT wasn’t a good idea Spanky? Now GFY

    Also, what good is pointing the finger of blame, the damage is done and continues. How about the Feds actually DOING SOMETHING about the spill besides figuring out who to blame.

    Dog and pony show IMO anyway.

  • Intervene

    Go Ron Paul!!!!

  • gwengoad

    WTF? brtish sounding bullshit??? come on!! you should protect the environment. For our children so they will not pay for our mistakes

  • robertk1968

    Support Peter Schiff challenging McMahon Senate in Connecticut. He is a true Tea Party canditate !!! We need more good people as well as Ron Paul. Search for his website and get on board !!!

  • Moragauth

    You could blame the gov’t too…