Kaine: Republicans Side with Big Oil by Voting to Keep Subsidizing Them


    The following statement is from Tim Kaine. Sadly, it wasn’t just Republicans who voted to keep the taxpayer-funded gravy train going for super-profitable Big Oil companies, it was also a small handful of Democrats, including our own Jim Webb. Very, very disappointing, and really there’s no excuse whatsoever for those votes. Anyway, I’m glad to see that Tim Kaine got this one right, as oil companies don’t need taxpayer subsidies, and we can find a lot better uses for our money that that boondoggle.

    Richmond, VA – Governor Tim Kaine released the following statement today after the U.S. Senate voted to block cloture on the Repeal Big Oil Subsidies Act:

    By rejecting the effort to repeal billions in taxpayer funded giveaways to profitable oil companies, Republicans have again sided with special interests at the expense of Americans.

    These subsidies, which have been consistently supported by my opponent George Allen, are unnecessary for the Big Five oil companies to turn a profit and do nothing to significantly lower the price of gas that Virginians pay when they fill up their tank. Instead, today’s vote just ensures all Americans are double charged by the richest oil companies – once in their pocketbook at the pump, and again in their tax bill each year.

    At a time when we face serious fiscal challenges and cannot afford to waste money on special interest giveaways, these resources should be strategically invested in energy technologies of the future that will make us less reliant on foreign oil, and to reduce our deficit.

    Exactly right; let’s spend this money to jump start us off our oil addiction rather than to perpetuate the same ol’ same ol’ — repeating the same thing and expecting different results, aka “definition of insanity.”

    UPDATE: Unlike George Allen, Senate Republicans, and a few clueless-on-energy (and economics) Democrats, President Obama totally “gets it” as well – see the video I’ve just embedded.

    • Virginia leaders condemn Romney-Allen Defense of Oil Company Handouts

      Richmond, VA – As the U.S. Senate debated an unsuccessful Democratic effort to end taxpayer handouts to highly profitable oil companies, Virginia elected and community leaders from across the Commonwealth spoke out this week on the need to end those subsidies and develop clean energy. They also condemned presidential candidate Mitt Romney and former Senator George Allen for continuing to support those handouts and opposing the development of clean energy and the jobs that come with it.

      At a news conference in Charlottesville House of Delegates Democratic Leader David Toscano said, “Virginia families and businesses who are paying too much at the pump don’t want politicians to shower those same oil companies with billions in their tax dollars too. Mitt Romney and George Allen talk a lot about gas prices, but if they really wanted to lower the cost of energy and decrease our dependence on other countries they’d join Democrats ending these handouts to profitable oil companies so we can use that money to develop clean energy and the jobs that come with it.”

      At a press conference in Roanoke Virginia Senator John Edwards said, “Under President Obama’s leadership domestic oil production is at an 8 year high, natural gas production is the highest it’s ever been and we are making record investments in clean energy and more fuel efficient cars.  

      “At the same time, we have reduced our dependency on foreign oil in each of the last several years.  The percent of foreign oil used is the lowest since the 1990’s and 15% lower than five years ago. There is no justification for continuing taxpayer handouts to big oil as Republicans want to do when oil companies are making record profits.  Tax dollars going to big oil companies could better be used in developing clean energy and alternative sources such as wind, solar, biomass and clean coal.”

      Former Delegate Paula Miller echoed that point during a news event on Thursday in Norfolk saying, “Virginians deserve real energy solutions and they won’t get them from politicians like Mitt Romney and George Allen who want them to fund big oil companies out of both sides of their wallet. Virginia can lead the way to energy independence but we need leaders who support a truly all of the above energy strategy, not more taxpayer handouts for highly profitable oil companies.

      At the same event in Norfolk, Virginia Senator Louise Lucas continued, “Just this week Governor McDonnell announced that Virginia is on track to be the first state in the country to develop offshore wind power. I was proud to work with Governor Tim Kaine to develop the comprehensive energy strategy that laid the foundation for this exciting news, and I hope I can work with him and President Obama to continue leading this Commonwealth and country forward to real energy independence.

      “Virginians deserve leaders who put them ahead of deep pocketed political contributors like big oil. So while Mitt Romney and George Allen continue to ask Americans to contribute to big oil profits both at the pump and with their tax dollars, we’re going to continue the fight to repeal these handouts, develop clean energy and make Virginia and the whole country a leader in energy production and innovation.”

      These leaders convened press conferences in their communities as the U.S. Senate considered Democratic legislation that would eliminate $4 billion in taxpayer giveaways to the largest oil companies.