Americans for Tax Reform has always opposed the ethanol mandate, tax credit, and import tariff.
Today Senators will have an opportunity to chip away at the ethanol industrial policy. Senators Coburn and Feinstein have offered Amendment #476 which would repeal the ethanol tax credit—a tax increase of $2.5 billion—and the ethanol import tariff. While these policies interfere with the free market, they do little to prop-up ethanol consumption.
To fully eliminate the ethanol regime, Senator DeMint has proposed Amendment #460 which would eliminate the real policy forcing Americans to use ethanol—the Soviet style Renewable Fuel Standard (ethanol mandate)—and repeal the death tax. Together, Amendment #476 and Amendment #460 completely abolish the ethanol industrial policy. The tax cut contained within the DeMint amendment is substantially larger than the $2.5 billion tax increase contained within the Coburn/Feinstein amendment. Thus,
Taxpayer Protection Pledge signers should feel free to support the Coburn amendment provided they also vote for the DeMint amendment. Taken together, this elimination of favoritism toward ethanol is not a violation of the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Senators have been afforded this opportunity to clarify their position on taxes and American ethanol policy. Senators who wish to raise taxes and nibble at the edges of the ethanol regime can vote only for the Coburn/Feinstein amendment. Senators who wish to cut taxes and totally eliminate the ethanol industrial policy can vote for the Coburn/Feinstein amendment as well as the DeMint amendment.