Obama's Tax Code Trip-Up

(Alexandria, VA) -- Today the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU) responded to an inconsistency in President Obama's statement during Sunday's "60 Minutes" interview that he doesn't believe in using the U.S. Tax Code to punish people. The grassroots citizen group noted that Obama's energy plan pursues precisely this line of attack.

Responding to a question about the House Bill that would impose a tax of up to 90 percent on AIG bonuses, President Obama stated:

Well, I think that -- as a general proposition, you don't want to be passing laws that are just targeting a handful of individuals. You want to pass laws that have some broad applicability. And as a general proposition, I think you certainly don't want to use the tax code -- is (sic) to punish people.

However, his Administration's budget plan -- a proposal that aims to impose over $30 billion in punitive tax increases on oil and gas companies -- defies this weekend's proclamation. NTU Vice President for Policy and Communications Pete Sepp offered the following comments on this contradiction:

"If President Obama claims to oppose manipulating our Tax Code to punish the financial companies receiving handouts from American taxpayers, then he should likewise oppose using taxes to penalize one of the few U.S. industries contributing to rather than taking from government coffers. However, the President's plan to selectively levy massive tax penalties on domestic energy companies defies that very notion.

"Using tax policy as weapon to hurt producers of traditional energy flies in the face of not only President Obama's statements on '60 Minutes,' but also the sentiment of the U.S. public. According to a recent Gallup survey, the majority of Americans -- even the majority of Obama voters -- support developing our domestic energy resources. Clearly this goal that would only be thwarted by saddling our oil and gas companies with over $30 billion in additional discriminatory tax burdens."

NTU is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes, smaller government, and economic freedom at all levels. Note: For more information, visit www.ntu.org or www.nonewenergytaxes.com.