Bear in mind that the tough questioning here is coming from Joe Scarborough, himself a former Republican member of the House.
Some transcript highlights:
Joe Scarborough: Why is Joe Barton being allowed to keep his job when Joe Barton apologized to a corporation that is destroying my hometown's economy and destroying the economy across the Gulf Coast?And, best of all:
Eric Cantor: Joe, listen, Joe Barton is not the issue. You know, Joe Barton apologized...
Scarborough: Well he kind of is, though. If he's the most powerful Republican on the Hill right now when it comes to energy, he is the issue, isn't he?
Cantor: No he's not!
Eric Cantor: Joe Barton has said he was wrong. He actually stepped before our entire conference yesterday and said, "If a Texan can be humble, I apologize. I was wrong." Okay? I think he has said it.
Joe Klein (Time): But Congressman, right after that -- I mean to me, the most amazing thing about this is that Joe Barton tweets, and right after that --
Joe Scarborough: Oh, this was unbelievable! Hold it, hold it, stop for a second. Let's just look at Eric, because you know what poor Eric's thinking? He's thinking, "This jackass has hurt the Republican Party, I'm out here defending him, and then the dumbass goes out and tweets. So, talk about this tweet!
Klein: He undercut his apology! I mean, this guy just can't get to "I'm sorry!"
Scarborough: Tell him he can't tweet for the next six months! But Eric, go ahead, I'm sorry. But you've got to admit that he it was stupid to go ahead and tweet after the apology, "Joe Barton was right."
Cantor: I don't even think he knew the tweet went out.
Scarborough: Wow. Let me just say, and put Eric's face up on the camera. We always talk about political athletes, guys who go out and have to fight the good fight, but they're running straight uphill with barbells on their back. Well this guy Eric is doing a great job despite the fact that he's having to carry Joe Barton's hulking mass up a mountain. Eric, good luck with Joe Barton in the future.