A Record That Speaks for Itself: GOP Votes to Support Big Oil 7 Times This Congress

This month, House Republicans are bringing a series of ‘drill only’ bills to the House floor that offer no relief for taxpayers or consumers and are instead a gift to Big Oil–which is already raking in nearly $36 billion in profits and having its best year since 2008. This year alone, Republicans have voted 7 times against ending billions in tax breaks to Big Oil and providing relief to America’s taxpayers and consumers:

May 5, 2011: Republicans voted against saying that if oil is taken from land owned by the American taxpayer, then it should benefit American families for the leases in the drilling bill.

May 5, 2011: Republicans rejected an effort to consider legislation that prohibits the Big Five oil companies from receiving tax breaks for domestic manufacturing in the 2004 international tax law.

April 15, 2011: House Republicans passed the GOP Budget which retains $40 billion in Big Oil tax loopholes and ends Medicare as we know it. The GOP Budget slashes investments in clean energy for an energy independent future by 70 percent – calling for drastic cuts in energy research and development, and the elimination of subsidies and tax benefits to spur wind, solar power and other alternative energy technologies, which they term “expensive handouts to uncompetitive sources of energy.”

March 9, 2011: Republicans unanimously voted against bringing up the Federal Price Gouging Prevention Act that makes it illegal to sell gasoline at excessive prices and prevents Big Oil from taking advantage of consumers and engaging in price gouging.

March 1, 2011: House Republicans unanimously voted against rolling back taxpayer subsidies for Big Oil. Republicans voted against an amendment to prohibit large oil companies from receiving certain tax breaks, like the domestic manufacturing deduction in the 2004 international tax law.

February 19, 2011: The Republican ‘So Be It’ Spending Bill slashed investments in the Commodities Futures Trading Commission – the agency charged with policing the country’s futures markets — by one-third at a time when speculation on energy futures, including oil, is at an all-time high. The world’s largest commodity trader, Goldman Sachs, recently told its clients that it believed speculators like itself had artificially driven the price of oil at least $20 higher than supply and demand dictate. That bill also cut funding for clean renewable energy including investments in wind and solar energy and advanced vehicle technologies and cutting-edge research for breakthrough technologies to fuel tomorrow.

February 18, 2011: 95% of House Republicans voted against closing Big Oil loopholes that cost taxpayers billions and making oil companies pay their fair share for drilling on public lands. To reduce the deficit, this amendment would have fixed a flaw in 1998 and 1999 leases in the Gulf of Mexico that allows oil companies to drill without paying any royalties that could cost American taxpayers up to $53 billion over the next 25 years.

While House Democrats passed multiple bills last Congress to lower gas prices, increase domestic production, and launch a cleaner, smarter, more cost-effective energy future that creates green jobs and reduces global warming, House Republicans voted against these bills and Senate Republicans blocked them from becoming law. See the Republican record of supporting of the Bush Administration’s ‘drill only’ energy policies that led to record profits for Big Oil, even greater dependence on foreign oil, and record energy costs in the 111th Congress»

It is time for Republicans to put partisan politics aside and join with Democrats to tackle high gas prices because, as Rep. Ed Markey, Ranking Member on the House Natural Resources Committee, wrote in USA Today, “the return of $4-per-gallon gas is punishing Americans at the pump and threatening to derail our economic recovery.”

Learn more about the President’s plan to win the future through clean energy:

White House infographic

Learn about the Taxpayer and Gas Price Relief Act introduced by House Democrats last week»