When Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., asked last week during a hearing on oil industry profits whether any of the companies' representatives had participated in the task force, four of the executives said they did not and the fifth said he did not know.Because there seems to be a fire in your pants, gentlemen. Hey, I thought they were under oath the first time, just didn't have to raise their right hands and say, "I do." Guess they forgot. Bet they'll have to do it this time.
The Washington Post, citing White House documents, reported Wednesday that representatives from four of the companies had visited the White House complex and met with Cheney task force officials in early 2001.
Domenici, chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said he sent a letter to the oil company executives seeking clarifications that would resolve any 'apparent inconsistencies' in their testimony. He was joined in the letter by Bingaman, the energy panel's ranking Democrat.
Earlier, Lautenberg asked the Justice Department to investigate whether the executives might be guilty of giving false statements to Congress.
Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and five other Democrats asked Domenici to recall the executives and require them to testify under oath this time.
The executives who testified last week on oil industry profits were Lee Raymond, chairman of Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM); David O'Reilly, chairman of Chevron Corp. (CVX); James Mulva, chairman of ConocoPhillips; John Hofmeister, chairman of Shell Oil Co.; and Ross Pillari, chairman of BP America Inc.
Lord Cheney is displeased.