Montana’s millionaire Congressman Dennis Rehberg is doubling down on his support for subsidies for his ‘longtime friends’ in Big Oil. But Montanans aren't buying it.
As Congress searches for responsible ways to tackle record deficits, it might be useful to take a look at whether Big Oil can afford to pay their fair share toward solving our debt challenges:
Big Oil Profits -- $32 billion in the first quarter of 2011, before taxes [Center for American Progress, 5/5/11]. Big Oil’s pre-tax profits could reach $200 billion before the end of the year [AP, 5/13/11].
Big Oil Subsidies -- $4.4 billion a year in taxpayer-funded subsidies [AP, 5/5/11]. Congressman Rehberg rejects proposals to end the giveaways, which would have saved $20 billion for the federal debt over the next few years [US Congress Joint Economic Committee, 5/11/11].
That's $32 billion in profits for Big Oil already this year and $4.4 billion in annual subsidies. It turns out Big Oil CEOs can live up to their responsibility to pay down the debt.
After all, Big Oil has been able to line Congressman Rehberg's pocketbook with over $300,000 over the course of his career.