Big Oil Tax Breaks Face Bipartisan Pressure

Friday, 29 Apr 2011 01:15 PM

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Some Republicans in Congress have joined Democrats in questioning whether the booming oil industry should get to keep $4 billion in tax incentives, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Oil industry,tax breaks,Mitch McConnell,budget deficit
Mitch McConnell
Democrats have labeled the tax breaks an unnecessary subsidy at a time of huge federal deficits and high oil-industry profits.

Top House Republicans including the speaker and budget committee chairman have signaled a willingness to explore repealing those breaks.

But the parties differ in their approach to the issue. House Republicans want to rewrite the U.S. tax code entirely to eliminate loopholes and lower corporate rates for all businesses.

Democrats are zeroing in on oil companies and, in the Senate, pushing a piecemeal vote on their tax incentives as a way to squeeze Republicans politically.

A spokesman for Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell says the just-oil strategy could backfire.

“Democrats are having a hard time explaining how this [vote] won’t raise gas prices, increase our dependence on foreign oil, and cost jobs,” the spokesman said.







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