Levin to House Republicans: End Tax Breaks for Big Oil

May 11, 2011 Issues: Energy


Ways and Means Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-MI) today made the following statement in advance of the Senate Finance Committee’s Thursday hearing on ending unjustified tax incentives for Big Oil:

“House Republicans should follow the Senate’s lead in considering legislation to end unjustified tax subsidies for Big Oil.  With consumers facing soaring gas prices, and Big Oil raking in huge profits, the people’s House should not be taking a back seat in repealing these giveaways. As my colleagues and I made clear last week: The Ways and Means Committee has a responsibility to ensure an equitable tax system and we urge our Republican colleagues to start by eliminating these unjustified tax breaks.” 

Just days after the Big Five reported a combined $32 billion in first quarter profits, all 15 Democrats on the Ways and Means Committee last week sent a letter to Chairman Camp last week urging an end to unjustified tax breaks for Big Oil and asking the chairman to schedule a markup in the near future to consider such a measure.

A copy of the letter, signed by all 15 Ways and Means Committee Democrats, can be viewed here:

Dear Chairman Camp:

We are writing to urge you to schedule a mark up in the near future to consider legislation to repeal tax subsidies for large integrated oil companies.

As you know, Speaker Boehner recently said that Big Oil is going to pay its “fair share in taxes.”  The Big Five oil companies reported a combined profit of $32 billion in the first quarter of 2011 alone.  Repealing the three largest tax breaks for the Big Five oil companies would raise billions of dollars a year. More than a billion dollars a year of that comes from one tax break enacted under the last Republican Majority.  This tax break, the Sec. 199 domestic manufacturing deduction, should never have benefited the Big Five in the first place.

At a time when our constituents are feeling the pain of rising gas prices, it is unjustifiable that our tax code subsidizes Big Oil to the tune of billions of dollars a year.  The Committee has a responsibility to ensure that our tax system is equitable, and we urge you to start by eliminating unjustified subsidies for large integrated oil companies.


A copy of the letter can be viewed here: https://democrats.waysandmeans.house.gov/sites/democrats.waysandmeans.house.gov/files/media/pdf/112/110502_SML_Oil_Letter_to_Camp.pdf