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Press Release

Taxpayer Group Exposes Misleading Claim About "Tax Breaks for Oil Companies"

For Immediate Release October 27, 2008
Pete Sepp, (703) 683-5700

(Alexandria, VA) -- Barack Obama's Presidential campaign has repeatedly claimed that John McCain's tax plan would "give oil companies another $4 billion in tax breaks." Like so much of the rhetoric flying back and forth between the candidates, however, that statement leaves out crucial details about the proposal and misleads voters, according to the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU). The non-partisan grassroots group has not endorsed any candidate for President.

"Senator Obama's words give the impression that McCain supports $4 billion of tax cuts targeted just at the oil industry, but the reality is that the Arizona Senator has proposed a complete overhaul of our burdensome corporate tax code to make the system fairer for all businesses," said NTU Government Affairs Manager Andrew Moylan.

McCain's plan would make two important and beneficial changes, Moylan noted. It would reduce the corporate income tax rate, which is among the highest in the world, from 35 percent to 25 percent while allowing for immediate expensing of corporate investments. These necessary reforms would help to encourage greater growth and job creation in the face of difficult economic times. Perhaps the most important effect of these provisions is that they would reduce the severe competitive disadvantage American businesses face when compared to other countries in our global economy.

A recent study by the Cato Institute found that America's effective corporate tax rate was 8th-highest in the world. Equally disturbing, it is more than double that of some of the most advanced economies in the world, including Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. "America swipes more from corporations than even most of traditionally high-tax Western Europe," Moylan added. "We cannot expect to attract new businesses and jobs to this country when we hit them with such punitive tax policies."

Moylan concluded, "Far from singling out any industry for help, reforming business taxation should reduce rates across the board and treat firms more equitably. This would improve the bottom line for thousands of corporations, large and small. America needs to cut corporate taxes to keep from falling even further behind its neighbors and competitors."

NTU is a nonpartisan, nonprofit citizen organization founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes, smaller government, and economic freedom at all levels. Note: For more information on NTU, visit

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