Urgent action needed to stop the energy subsidy amendments
We have learned that T. Boone Pickens has used the five day delay in the vote on the Pickens Payoff Plan to twist a lot of Republican arms in the Senate. The beneficiaries of the established subsidies that would benefit from their extension have also been pulling out all the stops for the Stabenow amendment. Thus we are now in danger of losing the votes on the Menendez-Burr amendment #1782 and the Stabenow amendment #1812. Please do whatever you can to make the case against energy subsidies and for free markets. Votes are scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. (March 13)
DRAFT Joint email Letter you can copy, paste and send to the Senate on Energy Subsidy Amendments:
The Senate is scheduled to finish voting on amendments to the highway bill, S. 1813, on Tuesday. We are writing to urge you to:
Vote Yes on #1589 (DeMint) to end all special-interest tax preferences for renewable energy, conventional energy, and alternative fuel vehicles;
Vote No on amendment #1812 (Stabenow) to extend tax credits for wind, solar power, a variety of biofuels, coal, oil and gas, energy efficient buildings and appliances, and plug-in electric vehicles; and,
Vote No on amendment #1782 (Burr/Menendez) to create massive new tax preferences for natural gas vehicles, fueling stations, and motor fuel.
The American people are fed up with corporate welfare. They view the Solyndra debacle as an object lesson in the folly of government trying to pick energy-market winners. Above all, they want Congress to put the nation’s fiscal house in order.
How you vote on the aforementioned amendments will determine whether or not you are serious about curbing political influence in energy markets, ending crony capitalism, and halting the nation’s slide towards bankruptcy.
The wind energy production tax credit (PTC) is a wealth transfer from States that do not establish renewable electricity mandates to States that do. The PTC props up these Soviet-style production quotas by masking their full cost from ratepayers. Congress should pull the plug on this deception: Vote No on amendment #1812, and let the PTC expire.
Amendment #1782, which proposes tax credits up to $64,000 for purchases of natural gas-fueled 18-wheelers, could add billions of dollars to the national debt. With natural gas industry profits soaring and prices at historic lows, there is no justification for Congress to rig the market in favor of natural gas producers, purchasers of natural gas vehicles, or investors in natural gas infrastructure.
The best energy policy is one under which consumers decide winners and losers and politicians can’t stick taxpayers with the bill when an energy company fails. The DeMint amendment (#1589) would eliminate tax favoritism in the energy sector. Equally important, it would not raise the overall tax burden, because it would use the savings from rescinded tax credits to lower general tax rates.