Paul Ryan Lies About Ending Oil Subsidies To Protect His Family’s Cash Bonanza

Mon, 2011-06-20 09:57Farron Cousins
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Paul Ryan Lies About Ending Oil Subsidies To Protect His Family’s Cash Bonanza

Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) has been all over the place when it comes to ending the multi-billion dollar subsidies that the oil industry receives every year. While he has publicly admitted that he is in favor of ending this “corporate welfare,” and his staff has claimed that his budget plan actually calls for an end to oil subsidies, the truth is that Rep. Ryan would never end oil subsidies because he makes a lot of money keeping the welfare spigot open.

The oil industry currently receives $4 billion in subsidies from the federal government, and receives more than $4.4 billion in tax breaks every year, bringing their total government handouts to more than $8 billion every year. Some estimates actually put the total number closer to $35 billion a year.

According to a new report by Joe Romm at Climate Progress, Paul Ryan and his family have a financial stake in some of the companies that receive these oil subsidies.

From Romm:

“What we have only just learned from Ryan’s financial disclosure forms for Congress that were made public this week is “he and his wife, Janna, own stakes in four family companies that lease land in Texas and Oklahoma to the very energy companies that benefit from the tax subsidies in Ryan’s budget plan.”

You can view Ryan’s financial disclosure forms here.

The Daily Beast has more:

Ryan’s father-in-law, Daniel Little, who runs the companies, told Newsweek and The Daily Beast that the family companies are currently leasing the land for mining and drilling to energy giants such as Chesapeake Energy, Devon, and XTO Energy, a recently acquired subsidiary of ExxonMobil.

Some of these firms would be eligible for portions of the $45 billion in energy tax breaks and subsidies over 10 years protected in the Wisconsin lawmaker’s proposed budget. “Those [energy developing companies] benefit a lot from these subsidies,” explained Russ Harding, an energy policy analyst with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, when presented with the situation, without reference to Ryan. “Without those, they’re going to be less profitable.”

To ethics watchdogs, Ryan’s effort to extend the tax breaks creates the potential appearance of a conflict of interest.

Over the course of his career, Ryan has raked in more than a quarter million dollars from polluters in the oil and gas industries and the coal industry. As a whole, the oil and gas industry has spent more than $1 billion on lobbying and political donations since 1998.

Even if his family wealth wasn’t directly tied to dirty energy welfare, his campaign cash from polluters ensures that fossil fuel interests can count on Ryan to protect their subsidies through his power position as the Chairman of the House Budget Committee.

Previous Comments

Joe Romm = George Soros’ paid mouthpiece.

Farron Cousins = James Hoggan & Associates Public Relations Inc. paid shill.

Thanks for playing.

“receives more than $4.4 billion in tax breaks every year, bringing their total government handouts to more than $8 billion every year. Some estimates actually put the total number closer to $35 billion a year.”

You’re joking, $35 Billion per year in subsidies, that’s all? Thats peanuts, the oil industry is a $1 trillion a year business in the USA. And you greenies are complainging about a lousy $35 billion? I have no problem if the oil subsidies are dropped, they are so small it would make no difference to the cost of a gallon of gas, it is insignificant. I would like to see how much the Chinese government subsidizes thier oil industry every year (with our money). I think a gallon of gas in China goes for about 25 cents. Prehaps you might want to go after the Chinese government if you are trying to get oil subsidies dropped. Oh sorry, China is perfect in every way, I forgot.

You forgot to mention the hundreds of billions of dollars PAID IN TAX by the oil and gas industry, and the fact that they produce 7% of the US GDP.

The oil companies do not pay billions of dollars in taxes. They collect taxes paid by consumers and pass that tax on to the government. There is a major differance between paying a tax and being a collector of taxes. Exxon for example paid nothing in federal taxes in 2010, however the federal government sent them a check for billions. This is called welfare.

I have a BS in Business with a major in accounting and own my own company. My company collects sales taxes and passes them on to the government however we do not pay the sales tax our customers do. My small company must survive without subsidies. Why can’t the cash rich oil companies survive without subsidies?

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