Echoing President Barack Obama’s call to close tax loopholes for the oil and gas industry, U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., unveiled a bill Monday that will end federal subsidies to oil companies and return the savings to American motorists.
The Gas Rebate Act of 2012 would take the nearly $40 billion in savings from closing the loopholes and provide drivers with a direct one-time payment of approximately $160 per registered vehicle. Gas prices are up more than 17 percent this year and have increased for the last 10 consecutive days with a $3.85 per gallon average.
Yarmuth says his legislation faces an uphill battle in the Republican-controlled House, but voters should pressure lawmakers to get it through Congress.
“Clearly, unless we get voter engagement in the issue of these subsidies it will never pass. The oil companies have spent tens of millions of dollars getting their way with the American Congress. So the whole concept behind this legislation is to give the American voter a way to judge how much these subsidies are worth to them,” he says.