Members of New York and New Jersey's Senate delegation met with British Prime Minister David Cameron on Tuesday night. The meeting which lasted roughly 45 minutes gave the Senators an opportunity to display a united front in pushing for a full investigation into the release of a convicted bomber and whether or not BP had a role in it.
Earlier in a joint news conference with President Barack Obama, Cameron had rebuffed the president's request for a full investigation and said, "I don’t need an inquiry to tell me it was a bad decision; It was a bad decision.”
Instead Cameron said he would potentially make public more information from an earlier investigation of the man's release but not start a new one.
New York's senior senator, Charles Schumer said, “To not interview witnesses and not look at all the facts as opposed to those captured in documents, would not reveal the whole case.”
At issue is Libyan Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, who was convicted for the 1988 bombing of a jet over Lockerbie, Scotland that killed 270 people, most of them American. Last year, the Scottish government released the cancer-stricken man on compassionate grounds, igniting outrage on both sides of the Atlantic.
"I would love to meet Mr. Cameron myself," said Kathleen Flynn, who lost her son J.P. Flynn in the crash. "And say to him, what happened to you guys?
Kathleen and Jack Flynn were stunned by al-Megrahi's release but now they are even more outraged with accusations that BP sought the release of the convicted bomber as part of efforts to seek access to Libyan oil fields. BP has acknowledged that it urged the British government to sign a prisoner transfer agreement with Libya but says it never specified al-Megrahi's case. Cameron maintains the oil giant could not have released the terrorist.
"It wasn't a decision taken by BP. It was a decision taken by Scottish government," Cameron said flatly.
But after Tuesday night's meeting, the senators left with the impression that an investigation is not out of the question and could still be considered.
"We had a very forthright conversation with the prime minister," said Sen. Frank Lautenberg. "And we tried to get the point across that there is so much suspicion that surrounds us that we have to understand what happened."
The senate will hold hearings on this subject next week. But some are losing faith in the process.
"Do I think BP is going to say I'm sorry?" said Jack Flynn. "Yes but behind our back they'll say we'll do this deal again and again and again."