Senate Caves to Big Oil Pressure; Decides Against Cutting Industry Tax Breaks

NRDC President: Hopefully Senators Will Vote More Responsibly on Upcoming Drilling Bill

WASHINGTON (May 17, 2011) -- After the Senate failed to pass a bill to eliminate nearly $4 billion a year in Big Oil tax breaks, Frances Beinecke, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council, issued the following statement:

“The Senate today had the chance to do right by American taxpayers. Instead, pressured by oil industry lobbyists and a misguided Republican leadership, it decided to continue to give tax breaks to highly profitable Big Oil companies that don’t need any taxpayer incentives.”

Up next on Big Oil’s wish list to Congress is a bill by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell that would expand offshore drilling while audaciously making the system that oversees drilling even less safe than before the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster. Sen. McConnell’s bill mirrors legislation already passed by the House.

“More drilling and more tax breaks won’t lower prices at the pump,” Beinecke said. “All it means is more money for Big Oil companies. Our lawmakers ought to be pushing for ways to help taxpayers, not more ways to help Big Oil.”