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Ladywriter

Senate Republicans block taxes on oil profits

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They halt Deomcrat proposal that would cost companies billions

WASHINGTON - Saved by Senate Republicans, big oil companies dodged an attempt Tuesday to slap them with a windfall profits tax and take away billions of dollars in tax breaks in response to the record gasoline prices that have the nation fuming.GOP senators shoved aside the Democratic proposal, arguing that punishing Big Oil won’t do a thing to lower the $4-a-gallon-price of gasoline that is sending economic waves across the country. High prices at the pump are threatening everything from summer vacations to Meals on Wheels deliveries to the elderly.

The Democratic energy package would have imposed a 25 percent tax on any “unreasonable” profits of the five largest U.S. oil companies, which together made $36 billion during the first three months of the year. It also would have given the government more power to address oil market speculation, opened the way for antitrust actions against countries belonging to the OPEC oil cartel, and made energy price gouging a federal crime

“Americans are furious about what’s going on,” declared Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D. He said they want Congress to do something about oil company profits and the “orgy of speculation” on oil markets.But Republican leaders said the Democrats’ plan would do harm rather than good — and they kept the legislation from being brought up for debate and amendments.

On world markets, oil prices retreated a bit Tuesday but remained above $131 a barrel. Gasoline prices edged even higher to a nationwide record average of $4.04 a gallon.

At the Capitol, Democratic leaders needed 60 votes and they got only 51 senators’ support, including seven Republicans who bucked their party leaders. Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, a state tied closely to the oil industry, was the only Democrat opposing the bill.

“We are hurting as a country. We’re hurting individually as Americans ... and the other side says, ‘Do nothing. Don’t even debate the issue,”’ complained Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.

“Average citizens are scratching their heads and saying, what’s wrong with Washington,” said Schumer.

GOP opponents argued that little was to be gained by imposing new taxes on the five U.S. oil giants: Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp., Shell Oil Co., BP America Inc. and ConocoPhilips Co.

While these companies may be huge, they don’t set world oil prices and raising their taxes would discourage domestic oil production, the Republicans said of the Democrats’ plan.

“In the middle of what some are calling the biggest energy shock in a generation ... they proposed as a solution, of all things, a windfall profits tax,” Republican leader Mitch McDonnell of Kentucky chided the Democrats. He called their proposal “a gimmick” that would not lower gasoline prices and only hold back domestic oil production.

CONTINUED: “This was politics at its worst” 1 | 2 | Next >

ugh


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I don't see the problem in not raising Oil taxes...

Shortly after the oil tax vote, Republicans blocked a second proposal that would extend tax breaks that have either expired or are scheduled to end this year for wind, solar and other alternative energy development, and for the promotion of energy efficiency and conservation. Again Democrats couldn’t get the 60 votes to overcome a GOP filibuster.

... OK I see a problem there...


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If the oild co's want to stay in business for the long haul they need to become energy co's. They need to diversify and offer customers alternatives to oil and gas. World wide ppl are sick of dirty fossil fuels and the cost of these pollutants financially and environmentally.

Seriously yo; we've had violent storms with flooding and tornadoes, a killer heat wave and a blizzard ALL IN THE SAME FRIGIN WEEK! That's not 'global warming' its climate destabilization. If we don't reverse this course or become better prepared to handle extreme weather (imagine the cost of putting in air conditioning units in every school in the north) we're dooooooooooooomed!


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                                               Look at the flowers

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I don't see how raising taxes will help the environment. If anything it will only help raise the price of gas even more to an already bad price due to the Iraq War.

I am how ever very displeased with taxes on wind, solar and other alternative energy development.

Overall taxing never helps the problem; just makes it worse.

I have my days where I think there should be bans on combustible fuels. But that would probably piss more people off.

*Edit

LEsEvb1WsIY

Edited by Myk JL
The real problem with Oil Prices

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