New Ad: Heller Fights for Lower Energy Costs
Introduced Legislation to Close Loopholes for Big Oil While Democrats’ Push for New National Energy Tax
(Las Vegas, NV) – Heller for Senate released a new ad today highlighting the stark contrast between Dean Heller’s record fighting for lower energy costs for Nevada families and businesses and Shelley Berkley’s efforts to raise energy prices. In the ad, Heller discusses legislation he introduced to close tax loopholes for oil companies and pass savings on to consumers, and his opposition to Democrats’ efforts to pass a new national energy tax. To view the ad, click here.
“Dean Heller voted against a national energy tax that seven-term Congresswoman Shelley Berkley supported. He even wrote legislation to close loopholes for Big Oil, but why do Shelley Berkley and extreme environmental groups oppose it? Because Senator Heller would pass the savings to Nevadans already struggling to make ends meet rather than let the government keep it.
“The difference between Dean Heller and Shelley Berkley couldn’t be clearer. Dean Heller provides solutions to problems while Congresswoman keeps up her wild attacks and sides with Nancy Pelosi 90 percent of the time,” said Chandler Smith, Heller for Senate spokeswoman.
1) Claim: Congress tried to pass a new energy tax.
Documentation: “As President Obama’s health care proposal survives on life support, his
huge energy tax plan known as ‘cap and trade’ passes each day in the next hospital room,
breathing with the help of a respirator…the bill would put the United States at a
competitive disadvantage with countries such as India and China – and that it would lead to
huge increases in energy costs for American consumers.”
Citation: House Vote 477, H.R. 2454, June 26, 2009 (Berkley voted “yea”); “Editorial:
Massive energy Tax,” Las Vegas Review-Journal, August 15, 2009.
2) Claim: The new energy tax would force “higher prices at the pump.”
Documentation: A study conducted by Science Applications International Corporation
(SAIC) assessed “the impact of the Waxman-Markey Bill on manufacturing, jobs, energy
prices and our overall economy.” Key findings:
· Cumulative Loss in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) up to $3.1 trillion (2012-2030)
· Employment losses up to 2.4 million jobs in 2030
· Residential electricity price increases up to 50 percent by 2030
· Gasoline price increases (per gallon) up 26 percent by 2030
Citation: “State-by-State Analysis of Waxman-Markey Cap and Trade Legislation Paints
Dour Picture for Nation’s Economy,” National Association of Manufacturers, August 12,
3) Claim: Heller voted against the national energy tax.
Citation: House Vote 477, H.R. 2454, June 26, 2009 (Heller voted “nay”)
4) Claim: Heller wrote the Gas Price Relief Act
Citation: S. Amdt. 1958, “Gas Price Relief Act,” Amends S. 2004. Introduced on March 27, 2012
5) Claim: The Gas Price Relief Act “eliminates tax loopholes for oil companies and passes those savings directly to you in lower taxes at the pump.”
Documentation: “Dean Heller files amendment that repeals tax breaks for oil
companies…Heller filed the Gas Price Relief Act as an amendment to the Democrats’ bill on
Tuesday, in which he proposed Congress repeal tax breaks enjoyed by the largest oil and
gas companies and put that money toward reducing the gas tax, the highway trust fund,
and paying for increased oil drilling and construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.”
Citation: Karoun Demirjian, “Dean Heller files amendment that repeals tax breaks for oil
companies,” Las Vegas Sun, March 28, 2012
Las Vegas Sun
Dean Heller files amendment that repeals tax breaks for oil companies
March 28, 2012
Nevada Sen. Dean Heller still probably won’t be voting for the Democrats’ Repeal Big Oil Tax Subsidies Act when the Senate votes on it later this week. But that didn’t stop him from pulling a sleight of hand Tuesday to claim the issue as his own.
Heller filed the Gas Price Relief Act as an amendment to the Democrats’ bill on Tuesday, in which he proposed Congress repeal tax breaks enjoyed by the largest oil and gas companies and put that money toward reducing the gas tax, the highway trust fund, and paying for increased oil drilling and construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.
Heller called the amendment “a compromise containing solutions to the issues we are facing today” and “a common-sense, all-of-the-above strategy to provide for the development of our domestic energy resources.”
But it’s also a turnaround for Heller, who has voted in the recent past to preserve those same oil and gas subsidies and has said that while he’s open to a discussion about closing the loopholes, he’s only willing to talk about that in the context of a larger tax code overhaul — which the Repeal Big Oil Tax Subsides Act is not.
A spokesman for Heller dismissed the suggestion that filing the amendment at all contradicts his earlier positions, explaining that the expedited schedule is because “an overhaul of the tax code is not going to happen this year, nor is it going to help anyone with gas prices this year.”
Congress is likely to take up a tax code overhaul either in its post-election “lame duck” session at the end of 2012 or in early 2013. Many provisions of the tax code — including the lowered individual tax rates that have been in place since the early years of George W. Bush’s presidency — expire in late 2012.
Oil and gas subsidies, however, are very much a living campaign issue leading up to November.
Heller has come under constant fire for voting to preserve oil and gas subsidies from Democratic Rep. Shelley Berkley, his chief rival for the Senate.
Congresswoman Shelly Berkley is trying to draw a parallel between Sen. Dean Heller and Rush Limbaugh.
“If Dean Heller has the power to address high gas prices, why isn’t he?” the Berkley campaign challenged Heller just last month. “He’s more concerned with padding the pockets of Big Oil.”
Tuesday’s legislation would appear to be Heller’s answer.
Berkley has herself taken aim at oil and gas subsidies in many forms, most recently in the form of an energy bill in which she proposed repealing the subsidies and putting the money saved toward renewable energy tax incentives.
The bill up for consideration in the Senate — penned by New Jersey Democrat Robert Menendez — is conceptually similar: It repeals oil and gas subsidies and puts the money toward renewable energy, alternative fuels and deficit reduction.
Heller’s bill, which is revenue-neutral, according to his office, does not put any money toward renewable energy projects. Heller has dismissed many of the renewable energy incentive programs Democrats are trying to renew as “failed stimulus” ventures — though Tuesday he took pains to clarify his wider position on renewable energy.
“Development of renewable energy is something I have long advocated for. … There is no doubt alternative sources of energy are our future,” Heller said “Today’s debate is about a bill that is merely two failed policies repackaged as a political stunt.”
He cited Nevada’s rising gas prices and its effect on the tourism industry, especially, as more important areas to focus on.
Heller has not said what, if anything, he plans to do with this legislation past this week. His amendment is not expected to get a vote as the Senate considers Menendez’s underlying legislation, but Heller’s office will not say whether he plans to push for it as a stand-alone bill.
Regardless, the existence of this legislation will now complicate what was, to this point, an easy and straightforward campaigning issue for his Democratic opponent.
She, however, does not seem keen on ceding any turf on the oil and gas issue to Heller — or change the general direction of her talking points.
“This week, Washington Republicans are showing Nevada families exactly who their priority is,” Berkley said in a floor speech Tuesday night. “Republicans are reiterating their support for taxpayer giveaways for Big Oil despite the fact that gas prices are soaring and the oil industry made $137 billion in profits last year. … Republicans, get your priorities straight.”
Las Vegas Review-Journal
EDITORIAL: Massive energy tax
August 15, 2009
As President Obama’s health care proposal survives on life support, his huge energy tax plan known as “cap and trade” passes each day in the next hospital room, breathing with the help of a respirator.
Finally, some Democrats in Congress are stepping back to question whether we need to rush through a bill that would completely disrupt the U.S. economy under the dubious premise that we must stop global warming or risk worldwide catastrophe.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rammed through a “cap and trade” bill in June, barely getting a majority. But the bill has met a cooler response in the Senate, which has yet to act.
Then, earlier this week, nine Democrat senators announced they’ll seek to impose carbon tariffs on certain imported goods in return for supporting cap and trade. That’s a tacit admission that the bill would put the United States at a competitive disadvantage with countries such as India and China – and that it would lead to huge increases in energy costs for American consumers.
And on Wednesday, a group of four more Democratic senators said Congress should abandon cap-and-trade legislation this year and focus instead on handing out more subsidies to renewable energy companies.
Neither protectionism through tariffs nor artificially forcing consumers to use more expensive solar or wind power will help the economy in the long run. Both are bad ideas. But the fact remains Senate Democrats are jumping ship on cap and trade because it is becoming obvious that the White House’s ambitious agenda is simply too costly to put in place
“With national unemployment tipping the scale at nearly 10 percent, experts are now referring to our present economy as the ‘Great Recession’,” notes Andrew Moylan of the National Taxpayers Union in Roll Call. “At a time when our nation’s leaders are desperately trying to find a way out of this quagmire, why would Congress consider a bill that would not only impose a national energy tax on every household and small business in the country, but also further restrict our domestic energy production?”
That even some Democrats are finally coming to realize that this massive expansion of the state envisioned by the president – through health care reform, energy policy and the rest – will overwhelm the average American is more reason for the Republicans to exhibit a united front against this breathtaking and dangerous agenda.
CQ FLOOR VOTES
HOUSE ROLL CALL VOTE 477
June 26, 2009
Greenhouse Gas Emissions – Passage
June 26, 2009 House Roll Call Vote 477 HR 2454
Passage of the bill that would create a cap-and-trade system for limiting greenhouse gas emissions and set new requirements for electric utilities. The EPA would be allowed to auction emission allowances to permit the buyer to emit a certain amount of greenhouse gases. Under the bill, three-quarters of emission allowances would be provided to polluters free of charge, based on formulas, when the cap-and-trade program would begin in 2012. Remaining allowances would be sold at auction. By 2030, 75 percent of the allowances would be sold to polluters by EPA. The bill would limit emissions at 17 percent below current levels in 2020, 42 percent in 2030 and 83 percent in 2050. Companies such as electric utilities, refineries and factories could buy and sell pollution allowances and get credit for funding special projects to reduce emissions on farms and in forests. It would require utilities to produce 15 percent of the nation’s electricity from renewable sources by 2020, with another 5 percent energy savings from efficiency. States could petition to bring the renewable mandate down to 12 percent, with 8 percent from efficiency. It would set new emissions standards for coal-fired power plants, and new energy efficiency and water use standards for buildings and products. It would establish programs to assist energy consumers with higher utility bills as a result of the system. It also would create programs for electrical transmission lines, smart grid technologies, modernizing electricity infrastructure to respond to changing conditions, reduction of emissions, increased energy efficiency, and carbon capture and sequestration.
Passed by a vote of 219-212: Democrats, 211-44 (Berkley voted “yea”); Republicans, 8-168
Note: A “yea” was a vote in support of the president’s position.
State-by-State Analysis of Waxman-Markey Cap and Trade Legislation Paints Dour Picture for Nation’s Economy
NAM-ACCF Study Concludes Bill Will Cost 2.4 Million Jobs
August 12, 2009
08/12/09 — WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the American Council for Capital Formation (ACCF) today unveiled a comprehensive study on the impact of The American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, also known as the Waxman-Markey Bill (HR 2454). The bill aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to cap the amount of carbon that is emitted by U.S. industry. The legislation does so by mandating a cap and trade program and other provisions governing fuel choices available to businesses and consumers. This bill passed the House of Representatives by a slim margin (219-212) earlier this summer. The Senate is expected to release its version of climate legislation in September.
The study, which was commissioned by the NAM and ACCF and conducted by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) using NAM and ACCF input assumptions, assesses the impact of the Waxman-Markey Bill on manufacturing, jobs, energy prices and our overall economy. The NAM and ACCF released national data as well as the analysis for 15 industrial states that would be impacted greatly if this or similar legislation is signed into law. The full report, including the data covering the remaining 35 states will be released in the coming weeks.
Jay Timmons, executive vice president of the NAM said, “Climate change is a very complex issue and I hope Senators will look closely at this study as they consider climate change legislation this fall. At a time when our country is struggling to come out of our longest and deepest economic downturn since the Great Depression, lawmakers should be focused on policies that provide incentives for businesses so they can create jobs and grow. Unfortunately, this study confirms that the Waxman-Markey Bill is an ‘anti-jobs, anti-growth’ piece of legislation. Further, leaders of countries such as China and India have made it clear they have no intention of reducing their own emissions. Waxman-Markey would give an edge to overseas competitors, discouraging domestic investment and the creation of American jobs.”
The NAM/ACCF study accounts for all federal energy laws and regulations currently in effect. It accounts for increased access to oil and natural gas supplies, new and extended tax credits for renewable generation technologies, increased World Oil Price (WOP) profile, as well as permit allocations for industry and international offsets. Additionally, the provisions of the stimulus package passed in February are included in this study. Key findings include:[list type="arrow"] [li]
- Cumulative Loss in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) up to $3.1 trillion (2012-2030)
- Employment losses up to 2.4 million jobs in 2030
- Residential electricity price increases up to 50 percent by 2030
- Gasoline price increases (per gallon) up 26 percent by 2030
Dr. Margo Thorning, senior vice president and chief economist for ACCF, highlighted the importance of reviewing economic findings while debating the climate change legislation. “This data shows that we cannot divorce the environmental impacts from potential economic damages. Policymakers may have the best of intentions when it comes to the environment, but it’s crucial that we compare the economic cost to the legislation’s actual impact on global GHG reductions. Considering that developing countries such as China and India have publicly stated that they will not undertake similar emissions policies, there would be almost no global environmental benefits from the bill. Ultimately, this study shows that Waxman-Markey, would significantly decrease employment and increase energy prices at a time when we can least afford it.”
Further, this study shows industrial states would be disproportionately impacted by high energy prices, loss of jobs and income. The 15 states analyzed in the initial study include:
9. North Carolina
14. West Virginia
SAIC used a modified version of the National Energy Modeling System, NEMS/ACCF-NAM 2, and the NAM and ACCF input assumptions, to quantify the impact of the Waxman-Markey bill.
“Policymakers and the public must have a clear understanding of the potential impact of climate change legislation to assess whether it will cause more economic harm than environmental good,” concluded Timmons.
The national and 15 state-by-state economic impacts can be found by visiting: http://www.accf.org/publications/126/accf-nam-study
For additional information or to schedule and interview, please contact Laura Narvaiz for the NAM at (202) 637- 3104 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Mike Burita for ACCF at (202) 420-9361 or MBurita@accf.org.
About the NAM
The National Association of Manufacturers (www.nam.org) is the nation’s largest industrial trade association, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., NAM has 11 additional offices across the country.
The American Council for Capital Formation (www.accf.org) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to the advocacy of tax and environmental policies that encourage saving and investment. The ACCF was founded in 1973 and is supported by the voluntary contributions of corporations, associations, foundations, and individuals.
NRSC Statement On Berkley’s Medi-Scare Event In Pahrump
This week, embattled Congresswoman Shelley Berkley tweeted that she would meet with Nevadans in Pahrump to discuss Medicare, yet she won’t allow anyone to videotape the event.
Probably because Berkley voted for ObamaCare and after two years she still can’t explain – or defend – why the Democrats raided Medicare by over $700 billion in order to pay for their job-killing healthcare law. In fact, just this weekend, the President’s own campaign manager admitted on Face the Nation that they did impose massive cuts to Medicare in their health care bill.
Notably, during the healthcare debate, President Obama told ABC News that he would veto any attempts to restore these cuts to Medicare.
If you are reporting on this news then please consider the following statement from the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC):
- “It’s clear embattled Congresswoman Shelley Berkley can’t run on her record so she’s resorting to scaring seniors in the Silver State. The reality is that rather than protecting entitlements for seniors, Shelley Berkley partnered with Nancy Pelosi to raid Medicare in order to pay for bigger government and more reckless Washington spending.” – Jahan Wilcox, NRSC Spokesman
OBAMA IS PROUD OF CUTTING MEDICARE TO FUND OBAMACARE AND VOWED TO VETO ANY ATTEMPTS TO REPEAL THE CUTS
President Obama Told ABC’s Jake Tapper That One-Third Of ObamaCare’s Funding Comes From Medicare Cuts And He Would Veto Any Attempt To Repeal Them. ABC’s JAKE TAPPER: “One of the concerns about health care and how you pay for it — one third of the funding comes from cuts to Medicare.” BARACK OBAMA: “Right.” TAPPER: “A lot of times, as you know, what happens in Congress is somebody will do something bold and then Congress, close to election season, will undo it.” OBAMA: “Right.” TAPPER: “You saw that with the ‘doc fix’.” OBAMA: “Right.” TAPPER: “Are you willing to pledge that whatever cuts in Medicare are being made to fund health insurance, one third of it, that you will veto anything that tries to undo that?” OBAMA: “Yes. I actually have said that it is important for us to make sure this thing is deficit neutral, without tricks. I said I wouldn’t sign a bill that didn’t meet that criteria.” (ABC News, 11/9/09)
Congressional Budget Office: ObamaCare Includes $741 Billion In Cuts To Medicare. (Douglas Elmendorf, Letter To Speaker John Boehner, Congressional Budget Office, 7/24/12)
Obama Deputy Campaign Manager Stephanie Cutter Bragged About ObamaCare’s Cuts To Medicare. CUTTER: “Well, you know ask the wealthy to pay a little bit more. Cut waste from the government. Reform Medicare. More than $300 billion in savings from Medicare. On top of the savings we’ve already achieved. You know I heard Mitt Romney deride the $700 billion cuts in Medicare that the president achieved through health care reform.” (CBS’ “Face The Nation,” 8/12/12)
The Reality Is That Obama-Berkley’s Reckless Medicare Cuts Are “Unrealistic” And Make Needed Reforms Harder
Medicare Chief Actuary Says ObamaCare’s Cuts To Medicare Are “Unrealistic” And Unsustainable. “Richard Foster, the chief actuary of Medicare, testified before the House Budget Committee said that the cuts to medical providers set by President Obama’s national health care law were unrealistic. ‘It’s pretty hard to imagine they could be sustainable,’ Foster said, under questioning from Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis.” (Philip Klein, “Medicare’s Chief Actuary Says ObamaCare’s Cuts To The Program Likely Unsustainable,” The Washington Examiner’s ” Beltway Confidential,” 7/13/11)
Obama Cut Medicare To Fund His New Health Care Entitlement Program, Which Will Leave “Fewer Options Available” When Medicare Crisis Hits. “‘We did it for a good cause, which was the expansion of coverage,’ said [economist and former Medicare trustee John] Palmer. ‘But down the road, when further steps have to be taken to close the Medicare deficit, then we will have fewer options available because we’ve already done some of the easier things.’” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “FACT CHECK: Can Overhaul Save Medicare?” The Associated Press, 5/1/10)
- “ [M]ake No Mistake — Closing Medicare’s Future Funding Gap Will Be Harder Now That Some Of The Easier Sources Of Savings Have Been Tapped To Finance The Health Care Bill.” (Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, “FACT CHECK: Can Overhaul Save Medicare?”The Associated Press, 5/1/10)
Obama-Berkley’s Medicare Cuts Are Forcing Private Physicians To “Run For Cover”
ObamaCare Is Forcing Private Practice Physicians To “Run For Cover.” “The health-care reform law is accelerating a shift away from private practices as doctors, fearful of new costs and regulations, ‘run for cover’ under the protection of large hospitals.” (J.D. Harrison, “Health Care Law Driving Doctors Away From Small Practices, Toward Hospital Employment,” The Washington Post, 7/19/12)
ObamaCare’s Medicare Cuts Are Forcing Private Physicians To Turn Away New Patients. “Doctors on the panel also warned that PPACA’s $500 billion cut to Medicare could translate into even less reimbursement for those who care for patients insured by the government. Already, many physicians are turning away new patients because they’re taking a loss or barely breaking even when working with Medicare.” (J.D. Harrison, “Health Care Law Driving Doctors Away From Small Practices, Toward Hospital Employment,” The Washington Post, 7/19/12)
- Small Practice Physicians Are Closing Their Offices And Moving To Large Hospitals Due To More Regulations And Higher Costs. “During a hearing before the House Small Business Committee on Thursday, health-care professionals explained that the shift has already been picking up momentum in recent years, driven largely by growing regulatory and administrative burdens, rising malpractice costs and declining reimbursements from insurers – all of which they say have hit small practices especially hard. Consequently, doctors are shying away from the traditional solo practitioner model in favor of employment at large hospitals, which amid constant industry changes, can provide more financial security and take responsibility for keeping up with new regulations.” (J.D. Harrison, “Health Care Law Driving Doctors Away From Small Practices, Toward Hospital Employment,” The Washington Post, 7/19/12)