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Gillibrand wants BP held criminally responsible for oil spill

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Senator Kirsten Gillibrand

By Mark Scott

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wbfo/local-wbfo-904975.mp3

Buffalo, NY – Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York is one of a number of US Senators who want BP Oil to be held criminally responsible for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Senator Gillibrand was among a handful of senators who signed a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, expressing concerns "about the truthfulness and accuracy of statements submitted by BP." Late Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder says federal authorities have opened criminal and civil investigations. He's not saying which companies or individuals might be the targets of the probe. Holder says federal clean air and pollution laws give him the power to open the investigations.

But during an appearance in Buffalo late last week, Gillibrand said BP needs to be held accountable.

"BP needs to pay for the entire clean-up," Gillibrand said. "There is no reason why the taxpayer should be soaked by this bill."

Going forward, Gillibrand says better protections are needed to hold oil companies doing such drilling far more accountable. She fears the damage will last generations.

Gillibrand said President Obama is doing the best he can in response to the disaster.