Last week, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) complained about a proposed escrow account that BP will fund in order to pay out claims resulting from its oil spill. Barbour claimed that it would cause BP to lose profits. “[I]t bothers me to talk about causing an escrow to be made,” he said, adding, “which makes it less likely that they’ll make the income that they need to pay us.” But yesterday on NBC’s Meet the Press, when host David Gregory asked Barbour why he opposed the account now that the oil giant has agreed to pay into it, Barbour changed his mind:
BARBOUR: Right, well, I thought that they were talking about taking $20 billion from BP all at once and my fear was if you took $20 billion from them all at once, put it in an escrow account then they wouldn’t have the working capital to generate the revenue to pay us. I think the President was smart, and I congratulate him and BP that they reached an agreement on. Instead of $20 billion taken out of that working capital all at once, it’s actually going to be $5 billion this year, $5 billion the next year, $5 billion the following year and $5 billion the fourth year.