Playing Small Ball on NAT GAS Act Pays Off
Keeping members of Congress in check is a full time job. It’s not just the big issues like the budget and debt limit that require attention, but also the small issues that don’t get much public attention, like the NAT GAS Act. As the New York Times points out:
“One week after Boehner’s March nod to the natural gas vehicles bill, Chocola’s and Needham’s groups joined more than two dozen others in March to call for a broad repeal of all industry-specific energy subsidies and a moratorium on new ones. The conservatives’ entreaty made few headlines at the time but caused a ripple effect now reaching the White House doorstep, as the Senate canceled its recess this week to dig in on a debt limit deal that now hinges partly on whether Republicans will accept revenue raised by rolling back ethanol and other energy tax breaks.”
What started off as a principled stand on market distorting energy subsidies, something very few people were talking about 6 months ago, is having an impact on ongoing debt negotiations.
And thanks to the efforts of conservatives around the country, 14 co-sponsors have pulled off the NAT GAS Act. This is no small feat. It takes far greater effort to pull off of a bill than it is to co-sponsor. Pulling off of a bill requires a Member to stand before the chamber and effectively admit they were wrong to sign onto the bill in the first place. 14 members of Congress have done this.
Unfortunately, there are still dozens of conservatives who continue to support this bill. Take action now to tell those Members that conservatives must not support this is a big-government handout.
This is not the only step in this process. We want to stop this new subsidy from taking over an industry like the failed-ethanol subsidy has done. We also want to roll back all subsidies that pick winners and losers in the market.
The real endgame is corporate tax reform, something that is missing from the current debt limit negotiations. All the subsidies need to be eliminated so that the free market can work and technologies can stand on their own merit.
We can start by stopping any new subsidies from taking hold of our economy.