Senate votes against ending oil subsidies

President Barack Obama's latest attempt to end subsidies for oil and gas exploration and production ground to a halt on Friday, March 30, as Senate Republicans rallied together to vote down the bill, according to CBS News.

The proposal would have ended $4 billion in tax breaks given to oil companies for oil exploration, which Obama argued was unnecessary given large profits in the industry.

"They can either vote to spend billions of dollars on oil subsidies that keep us trapped in the past, or they can vote to end these taxpayer subsidies that aren't needed to boost oil production," Obama said on Friday before the vote.

Despite the Democratic majority in the Senate, the bill was ultimately defeated 51 to 47. Four Democrats crossed party lines to vote in favor of the oil subsidies.

CNN Money contributor Dan Mitchell suggests that the furor against these subsidies are largely misplaced, since the large profits seen by oil companies are mostly representative of the scale of the industry as opposed to any improper pricing.

Analyses of oil exploration around the world can be found at PennEnergy's Research area.

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