REICH: Well, look, Jake, BP does not have unlimited resources. It has a lot. But inevitably, there is going to be a clash, because the costs of this clean-up, the costs of containing the oil spill damage, the costs of plugging that hole are going to be in the tens of billions of dollars. And the question is, how much of this is going to be borne by the American taxpayer and how much by BP?
But the present spectacle of the Coast Guard asking BP to speed up this clean-up is absurd. I mean, the federal government needs to be in charge. The president needs to be in charge of this. Use BP's expertise. Use BP's resources. But the president must be in charge of all of this. Otherwise, he looks like he's just standing on the sidelines.
BRAZILE: Well, the administration has been constrained by the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, which basically gives the responsible party the lead role in trying to not only fix the problem, but contain the problem. That has been the problem from day one. They've waited for BP to come up with the answers, and we know that BP continues to mislead people.
I don't have any sympathy -- and I -- and I probably have some stock or something in BP, because I have mutual funds, so let me just put that aside and say, all the people of Great Britain, this is not personal. This is not about your national identity.
This is about a big region of our country that now has to deal with an oil spill that will go on for years and years and years, threatening the livelihood of human beings, marine life, sea life, and a way of life for people who make that their homes, 14 million Americans.
So when it comes to sympathy, angry, love (ph), go down to the Gulf Coast, because we have all of it. And we're angry. Tomorrow, the BP directors will meet. I hope that they hold that money in escrow. I hope...
TAPPER: The dividend -- the dividend money?
BRAZILE: Absolutely. They made $6.8 billion in profit as of March 31st. Hold it in escrow until the investigation is completed. And while they're at it, process these claims.
People are waiting, waiting in line now in St. Bernard Parish for food because they cannot go out and fish. They can't hunt, so they can't feed their families. They can't pay their mortgage. I have a lot of anger. I don't want my president to be angry. I have it for him.
REICH: Go beyond escrow. Go into temporary receivership.
TAPPER: You think that the Obama administration should take control of BP or BP America?
REICH: BP America, absolutely, Jake. Otherwise, not only is this a political disaster-in-waiting, because this is going to get larger and larger, and the president looks like he's waiting on the sidelines, but, secondly, we have no way of knowing as American people that BP is actually telling the truth, that all of its resources are being put to the appropriate use, and that it is appropriately balancing the health and safety of Americans against the cost of doing this clean-up.
This is a for-profit organization, BP, that is answerable to its shareholders, not to the American people.
TAPPER: President Obama is going down to the gulf, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida, tomorrow. And when he gets back, he's going to give an address to the nation from the White House Tuesday at 8 o'clock. Last time he went down, his own White House video cameras caught him talking to residents down there, and this is what he had to say.