Big Oil’s Lobbying Efforts Pay Off

The Wall Street Journal today reports that the major oil companies successfully “beat back” attempts by Congress to have oil companies pay their fair share in taxes:

Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and ConocoPhillips beat back an attempt by senators to raise their taxes by nearly $6 billion.

The Senate version of the bill at one point included a provision that would have cost the five largest oil companies — companies with average daily production of 500,000 barrels; gross receipts of more than $1 billion dollars in 2005 and an ownership in a refinery of 15% or more — about $5 billion by changing how they account for oil inventory. House Republicans dropped the provision from the final version of the bill.

A separate Senate measure would have stripped $700 million in tax incentives for large oil companies to explore for oil and gas. That provision, too, was dropped from the compromise bill that emerged from House-Senate negotiations.

Looks like Big Oil has been putting their record profits to good use.

PoliticalMoneyLine has a new analysis on how they’ve been spending their money. In 2005, the top ten oil companies spent a whopping $33,173,092 lobbying Congress and the Bush administration. The numbers are broken down by company below:

Oil CompanyAmount SpentChevronTexaco$8,550,000ExxonMobil$7,140,000ConocoPhillips$5,098,084Marathon$4,290,000BP$2,880,000Occidental$2,042,177Shell$1,478,831Ashland$904,000Sunoco$540,000Anadarko$250,000TOTAL$33,173,092