Jim Oberstar sets House hearings on BP's Deepwater Horizon debacle

BP executives and others are going to get an earful from members of Congress tomorrow, when the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure opens hearings into the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion and ongoing oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the panel's chairman, U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar announced this morning.

The news come on the heels of a letter sent by Sen. Amy Klobuchar and six of her colleagues to Attorney General Eric Holder, seeking a criminal investigation into whether BP, which owned the rig and now owns the environmental disaster, misled the feds into its preparedness.

"The magnitude of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill is unknown, but it appears to be a massive environmental disaster that is causing serious damage to the U.S. economy and the natural resources of the Gulf Coast region," said U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar, of Minnesota, the committee's chairman. "Because this oil spill could jeopardize the livelihoods and environment of thousands of Americans who live in the region, we must closely examine what caused the disaster, the effectiveness of response of the companies responsible for the spill and the Federal government, and what steps must be taken to avoid a similar catastrophe in the future."

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