I suspect that negotiations with the administration for a 15 bil settlement aren't going over well and 25 bil is the cast in stone figure, hence the sale of tnk partnership is required (IE another 30 bil). I also suspect once this sale is complete and the penalty is paid, BP will no longer be BP. They will be gobbled up and if you are worried about SEC or EU approval, don't be. Given the world economy, approval will be simple and uncompliacted. Throw in BP's inability to right itself, whoever the white knight is, will be given the keys to drive. This is great news for shareholders!