Michigan LCV Urges Rep. Upton to Cut Deficit and Big Oil Tax Loopholes

image upton michigan lcv deficit oil

With gas prices rising and oil companies expected to report massive first quarter profits this week, Rep. Fred Upton is finding himself in a tough spot defending his votes to maintain billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies to oil companies [House Vote #153, 3/1/11]. Feeling the heat this week, Speaker Boehner suggested Big Oil companies don't need these government handouts, stating that oil companies are "gonna pay their fair share in taxes and they should," Boehner told ABC News Monday night, adding that, “frankly, they've got some part of this to blame."

Although the House leadership admits that the richest oil companies in the nation don’t need billions in government subsidies, they continue to vote for these egregious handouts.

Our Political Director, Ryan Werder, noted that in the past three months alone, Congressman Upton took thousands in campaign cash from companies like BP and Exxon and continues to dole out taxpayer dollars to the most profitable companies in the U.S. while Michigan families suffer under record prices at the pump. This is a perfect opportunity to cut the federal deficit while improving our environment; it is past time for Rep. Upton to end his support for this corporate welfare for the sake of both our nation's and our families' budgets and long-term health. With oil companies poised to announce record profits during these tough economic times, it could not be clearer that these companies are the least deserving of taxpayer money and government handouts.

Furthermore, Rep. Upton received $5,000 each from BP and Exxon in the first quarter of 2011. Although he recently pledged to return the BP contributions, he has yet to do so. A recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found that 74 percent of voters support eliminating tax breaks to oil companies. [NBC/WSJ Poll, February 2011]