Palin: Obama Botched Spill Response Because BP Contributed to his Campaign?


Photo via the Telegraph

Who doesn't love a good Palin-ism? While this one probably won't rank among her best, it's still quite silly. In an interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News (where else?) Palin suggested that Obama was slow to respond to the spill ("it took him so doggone long to get down there") because he took campaign contributions from BP employees. The ex-governor wondered why the mainstream media wasn't digging into this sinister connection. So I'll tell her why not: because her allegation doesn't make any sense. At all.Here's what she said on Fox:

I don't really know how to put this, Chris, except to say that the oil companies who have so supported President Obama in his campaign and are supportive of him now -- I don't know why the question isn't asked by the mainstream media and by others if there's any connection with the contributions made to President Obama and his administration and the support by the oil companies to the administration.

If there's any connection there to President Obama taking so doggone long to get in there, to dive in there, and grasp the complexity and the potential tragedy that we are seeing here in the Gulf of Mexico

Now, her allegations come on the heels of a Politico report that revealed that BP employees donated $71,051 to the Obama campaign (which was less than 0.01% of the hundreds of millions collected in total). BP itself contributed nothing to the Obama campaign, and contributions from the oil and gas industry in general were nearly a third of what went to McCain. In fact, here's the very mainstream Wall Street Journal looking into such contributions:
According to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, Republicans receive far more campaign money from the oil and gas industry than do Democrats.

So far in 2010, the oil and gas industries have contributed $12.8 million to all candidates, with 71% of that money going to Republicans. During the 2008 election cycle, 77% of the industry's $35.6 million in contributions went to Republicans, and in the 2008 presidential contest, Republican candidate Sen. John McCain received more than twice as much money from the oil and gas industries as Obama: McCain collected $2.4 million; Obama, $898,000.

But forget all that for a second, and let's analyze the actual allegation. Logically, I suppose, it goes something like this: BP gave money to Obama's presidential campaign. BP was responsible for a massive oil spill. So, Obama took a "long time" to get down there (for the record his response wasn't even particularly slow). I'm not even sure what Palin's attempting to imply here, other than merely trying to suggest there's a nefarious collusion between the two parties together at any cost. If if BP had somehow donated millions of dollars to Obama, and he was completely in the oil industry's pocket, how does it benefit either party for him to be slow to respond? Doesn't that just make both parties look worse?

It seems to me that Palin's thinking is simply: Obama got money from BP, and BP did something bad. How can I link the two? Unfortunately for her, what she came up with was totally incoherent. Woops.

Via Think Progress
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Tags: Barack Obama | Gulf Oil Spill | Oil | Oil Spill

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