Frist Had Found a Way to Fund His Gasoline Tax Rebate

As I read the latest from CNN, I may need to apologize (partially) to Senator Frist:

NEW YORK ( – Senate Republicans have withdrawn a tax provision in their energy legislation that would have generated billions of dollars by changing the way businesses treat inventories for tax purposes, according to a report in The New York Times.

So it turns out that the Senator was contemplating some means for giving low to middle income consumers a tax break by increasing taxes on businesses and not by increasing even further the deficit. But then I read the rest of this story:

Sen. Bill Frist of Tennessee, the majority leader, said he had decided – for now – to jettison the provision, which was met with widespread opposition in the business community. Instead, he indicated that the Senate Finance Committee would hold hearings on the plan “later this year, so the plusses and minuses of the provision can become well known,” the newspaper said … The newspaper said the Republicans backed off from their proposal after facing a torrent of objections from business leaders and the oil industry, who typically view Republicans in Congress as allies.

In other words – NEVER MIND!

Update: Presidential economic advisor Edward Lazear argues against tax cuts for gasoline:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Senior White House economist Edward Lazear said Tuesday that proposals to cut the gasoline tax would take energy policy in the wrong direction by encouraging consumption.

Exactly – why do the pandering politicians wish to encourage more consumption of oil?

Update II: Max Sawicky joins us at the oil tax increase coalition and sips some coffee as he provides more insights.