Democrats, ironically, are seeking to carve out new subsidies for oil refineries in an omnibus spending bill being negotiated in Congress, amid horse-trading with the GOP for an extension of valuable tax subsidies for the wind industry.
The move, led by Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., has conservative groups jumping up to point out the "hypocrisy," given Carper's long-standing advocacy for repealing oil subsidies in favor of clean energy resources.
The amendment is in response to a Republican effort to add a measure to the spending bill to lift the 40-year-old ban on oil exports. Refiners on the East Coast have campaigned against removal of the export ban. They argue that lifting the ban would raise the cost of oil for them to refine into gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, and force them to close facilities.