Fireworks Over Gas

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Friday, May 13, 2011 - 8:48am

Fireworks on Capitol Hill as oil executives insist they need tax subsidies.


Mix Americans’ growing gas bills with executives from the world's biggest oil companies on Capitol Hill and it's sure to fuel some fireworks.

New York Senator Chuck Schumer said, "You'd have an easier time convincing the American people that a unicorn just flew into this hearing room, than these big oil companies need taxpayer subsidies."

Chevron CEO John Watson said, "Raising our taxes will not reduce the price of gasoline."

Republican Senator Orrin Hatch called it a dog and pony show while House Speaker John Boehner said it was political posturing.

"We all know that going after oil companies is easy politics, but we also know if this bill were to pass it wouldn't lower gas prices one penny," said Boehner.

But many Democrats including the President think ending tax breaks for companies making record profits means billions that could help ease the deficit.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said, "Our position is the best use of that money would be to invest in clean energy."

But with the repeal of the oil company tax breaks unlikely to pass, the White House welcomed Republicans to try to find other common ground on the budget. The two sides are still far apart.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said. "We are talking here about spending reductions. There will be no tax increases in connection with raising the debt ceiling."
 

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