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May 17, 2011

Contact: Maggie Kao, 202-675-2384

Majority of Senate Votes to End Tax Breaks for Big Oil
Final Vote 52-48 Falls Short of 60 Votes Required 

Washington, D.C. – Today the majority of the U.S. Senate voted in favor of the Close Big Oil Tax Loopholes Act (S. 940), but failed to reach the 60 votes needed to pass the bill.  The bill, which had overwhelming public support, would have ended $21 billion in tax breaks for Big Oil, reduced the federal deficit and required Big Oil to pay their fair share of taxes, amid record profits for the industry and sky-high gas prices.

In response, Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune issued the following statement:

“While it is encouraging that the majority of our Senators voted to support basic fairness and common sense by ending Big Oil tax breaks today, the Senate was not able to muster the 60 votes required to pass the Close Big Oil Tax Loopholes Act. 

“As Americans struggle to pay their bills, feed their families and fill up their gas tanks, Big Oil will continue to enjoy a free ride on their taxes while also benefiting from record high gas prices and profits and freely polluting our air and water.

“Enough is enough.  For too long, Big Oil has had our economy in a stranglehold.  We need leaders who are not beholden to Big Oil and who are not afraid to take bold action to break our nation’s dangerous dependence on oil through smart transportation choices, better, more fuel efficient vehicles and real solutions to move us Beyond Oil.“


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