New Poll: Americans Support Energy Production, Oppose Unfair Taxes by a 3-1 Margin

AEA President Tom Pyle: “These results may not be what the leaders on Capitol Hill want to hear,but it is no surprise that even with the tragic events unfolding in theGulf, Americans recognize the realities of our nation’s economy, the abundance of energy still available here in the U.S., and the overall exemplary safety record of our nation’s drillers.”

WASHINGTON – A new survey released today by the American Energy Alliance (AEA) found that 77 percent of registered voters oppose efforts in Congress to tax American companies twice on income earned abroad. The poll also found that 3 out of 4 Americans agree that our energy companies should be allowed to continue offshore exploration for energy and, separately, that we should increase U.S. oil production.

“These results may not be what the leaders on Capitol Hill want to hear, but it is no surprise that even with the tragic events unfolding in the Gulf, Americans recognize the realities of our nation’s economy, the abundance of energy still available here in the U.S., and the overall exemplary safety record of our nation’s drillers,” AEA president Thomas Pyle said.

“AEA recently commissioned a study that showed 12,000 jobs would be lost and $2.8 billion in economic activity with it, because of the Administration’s six-month moratorium in the Gulf. This unpopular and unnecessary ban is costing more jobs every day and will cost every American in terms of higher energy prices and increased reliance on energy from unstable foreign regimes.  Again, we urge the Administration to listen to the American people and reopen the Gulf to responsible energy development.”

The survey, conducted by Jan R van Lohuizen from Voter/Consumer Outreach, comes at a time when the President and Congress contemplating are attempting to pay for environmental and other pet projects on the backs of American oil and gas companies.  Two specific changes to the tax code included in the President’s 2011 budget and under discussion on Capitol Hill would have the impact of increasing the cost of energy in the U.S. and could lead even more job losses in the energy sector.  The U.S. currently taxes the global income of its international companies, but provides a credit against domestic tax liability on that income in hopes of keeping American companies from being “double-taxed” on their overseas earnings. Targeting our own energy producers with this double-tax will weaken American energy companies’ ability to compete with foreign energy companies.

Additionally, policymakers are looking to repeal Section 199 tax provisions which gives all businesses that manufacture goods within the U.S. an incentive to grow their U.S. operations and hire more U.S. workers.  Some in Washington are attempting to repeal these provisions just on the oil industry, essentially discriminating against energy jobs.  Today, the energy industry employs some 9 million workers.  However, many of these jobs could be in jeopardy if the Administration and Congress continue the drilling moratorium and impose new and onerous taxes on these companies.

The survey also found that Americans overwhelming oppose new regulations on the energy industry and, instead, support efforts to better enforce existing laws (16%-75%).

Read the full results from AEA’s survey.

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