Economics for the Earth Blog

Senate GOP Votes to Protect Big Oil Giveaway

Posted May. 17, 2011 / Posted by: Kelly Trout

For Immediate Release

Contact:
Kelly Trout, 202-222-0722, ktrout@foe.org
Nick Berning, 202-222-0748, nberning@foe.org

Senate GOP Votes to Protect Big Oil Giveaway

WASHINGTON, D.C.—By a vote of 52 to 48, the Senate tonight failed to take up debate on a bill from Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), the Close Big Oil Tax Loopholes Act, that would eliminate over $20 billion in subsidies for oil companies and use the savings to reduce the national debt.

Three Democrats joined all but two Senate Republicans in voting to protect oil company handouts.

Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica responded with the following statement:

“It is shameful that ending handouts for oil companies has become partisan politics. The American people want these subsidies ended; members of Congress should listen to their constituents. 

“The Senate refusal to even debate a measure that would have saved Americans $21 billion shows just how much clout oil dollars have within the halls of Congress. In just the four hours that senators discussed whether or not to debate the bill, the Big Five oil companies racked up another $48 million in profits.

“This is money that could have been used to create jobs or nourish hungry children. Instead of debating how to end giveaways to multibillion corporations, senators would apparently rather debate taking food out of children’s mouths or eliminating medical care for grandma.”

For more information on the $49 billion in tax breaks for the fossil fuels industry that are targeted for repeal in President Obama's budget see Friends of the Earth's policy brief: http://www.foe.org/sites/default/files/Fact-sheet-Obama-budget-fossil-fuel-giveaways.pdf 

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Friends of the Earth fights to defend the environment and create a more healthy and just world. Our current campaigns focus on promoting clean energy and solutions to climate change, keeping toxic and risky technologies out of the food we eat and products we use, and protecting marine ecosystems and the people who live and work near them.

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