From Senate Republicans:
CONGRESS DAILY: “Senate Democrats Tuesday Indicated Plans To Use Funds Generated By Increasing Fees Oil Firms Pay Into A Oil Spill Cleanup Fund As A Pay-For For A Portion Of An Extenders Bill Of Tax Breaks And Social Spending. Republicans argued that move amounts to ‘double-counting’ and seeks to exploit widespread desire to increase the fee to fund unrelated provisions.” (“Democrats Pursuing Multiple Ways To Throw Oil On GOP,” Congress Daily, 6/9/10)
CQ: “Democrats Are Double-Counting The Money, Because They Are Both Putting It Into The Dedicated Trust Fund For Spill Cleanups And Claiming It As An Offset For The Tax Breaks And Spending In The Bill. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., called it an ‘act of fraud,’ and Republicans claimed that Democrats were raiding the trust fund, even though the bill does not remove money from the fund.” (“Senators Drag Their Feet On ‘Extenders’ Bill; Action Slides To Next Week,” CQ Today, 6/9/10)
DOW JONES: “[O]ther Republican Leaders Were Also Critical Of The Fact That Democrats Plan To Dramatically Increase A Levy Charged On Oil Companies That Is Supposed To Be Used To Cover Spill Clean- Up Costs, And Instead Use It To Pay For Part Of The Legislation.” (“Tax Bill Could Face More Changes To Get Needed Senate Votes,” Dow Jones Newswire, 6/10/10)
WALL STREET JOURNAL: “Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell Of Kentucky Said Tuesday That Democrats Were Raiding The Fund To Pay For Programs Not Related To Oil-Spill Cleanup. New Revenue Raised By The Levy ‘Ought To Be Used To Clean Up Spills,’ He Said.” (“As Missteps Mount, So Does the Backlash,” The Wall Street Journal, 6/10/10)
MCCLATCHY: “Senate Democratic Leaders Want To Impose A 41 Cent Per Barrel Tax On Oil Companies To Help Clean Up Future Spills — More Than Five Times What The Companies Pay Now — But Republicans Say The Effort Is Deceptive Because There's No Guarantee That The Money Would Be Used For That Purpose. … Republican senators said that the fee hike, which would raise an estimated $15 billion over 10 years, would help pay for a host of programs that Democrats are championing.” (“Democrats Propose New Oil Tax, But What Would It Pay For?” McClatchy, 6/9/10)
POLITICO: “Republicans Have Complained That The Money Generated By The Tax Hike—$15 Billion Over 10 Years—Actually Would Be Used … To Offset Increased Spending On Things Like Medicaid.” “Specifically, GOP senators objected to a proposed fivefold hike in the tax oil companies now pay into a spill liability fund. The proposal, part of a larger tax extenders bill being debated by the Senate, increased the tax on offshore oil to 41 cents per barrel from 8 cents. Republicans have complained that the money generated by the tax hike—$15 billion over 10 years—actually would be used to ease a House-backed tax on investment fund managers and to offset increased spending on things like Medicaid.” (“GOP Attacks Oil Tax Plan,” Politico, 6/9/10)
ABC NEWS: “So Why Are Republicans Accusing Democrats Of Trying To ‘Raid’ The Trust Fund To Expand The Size Of Government? Democrats Have Placed The Proposal Into A Larger Bill That Would Help Extend Unemployment Insurance, Stop A Pay Cut To Medicare Doctors, Extend Expiring Tax Credits For Businesses And Much More.” (“Legit Oil Tax Hike Or Political Accounting Fraud?” ABC News, 6/9/10)
MARKET NEWS INTERNATIONAL: “McConnell Said This Provision Is Being Used To Pay For The Broader Tax And Benefit Package Rather Than For Oil Spill Liability.” (“US Senate Resumes Consideration Of $140 Billion Extenders Bill,” Market News International, 6/9/10)
REUTERS: “Republicans Cried Foul. They Accused Democrats Of Raising The Tax To Offset Some Of The $126 Billion Cost Of The Bill. Democrats Are “Stealing The Money” And Using It For Other Purposes, Said Republican Senator David Vitter.” (“Lockbox May Be Making A Political Comeback,” Reuters, 6/9/10)
BLOOMBERG: “The Senate Measure Was Criticized By Republicans, Who Said Democrats Were Proposing To Use Proceeds From The Oil-Tax Increase To Pay For Jobless Benefits And Other Expenditures Rather Than Shoring Up The Trust Fund To Pay To Clean Up Oil Spills Such As The Ongoing One In The Gulf Coast.” (“Senate To Consider Amendments To Jobs Plan With Buyout Fund Tax,” Bloomberg, 6/9/10)
It's this same kind of gimmicks and slick (get it? oil slick) accounting tricks that are turning off the American people.
This isn't fiscal discipline. This is fiscal funny business!