The Republican speaker of the House, John Boehner, said Congress should "certainly ... take a look at" raising taxes on oil and gas companies, explaining, "we're at a time when the federal government's short on revenues," and mentioning the oil depletion allowance as a potential target.
For this we need Republicans? As Mr. Boehner's Budget chairman, Paul Ryan, has tried to explain the federal government doesn't have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem. And raising taxes on energy at a time when gas is $4 a gallon or higher might well result in the tax increases being passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices.
On the oil depletion allowance, Senator Kennedy's October 13, 1960 letter has some good points:
In answer to your inquiry regarding my position on the oil-depletion allowance, please be advised as follows:
I have consistently, throughout this campaign, made clear my recognition of the value and importance of the oil-depletion allowance. I realize its purpose and value are to provide a rate of exploration, development, and production adequate to our national security and the requirements of our economy. It is primarily a matter of resources policy. This is true not only of oil, but as a matter of natural resources generally.
The oil-depletion allowance has served us well by this test....a healthy domestic oil industry is essential to national security.