Wicker, Cochran Voice Opposition to New Energy Tax

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Thad Cochran, R-Miss., today voiced their opposition to a tax on carbon dioxide (CO2), which would raise the cost of electricity, gasoline, natural gas, and other energy sources.

The Mississippi lawmakers were among the 24 Senators cosponsoring a resolution, which expresses the Senate’s concern that a CO2 tax would be detrimental to the economy of the United States.

“A carbon dioxide tax would negatively impact every single American,” Wicker said. “The Obama Administration continues to push its oppressive climate agenda, putting our economy at a huge disadvantage with minimal benefits to the environment. Too many people are facing long-term unemployment and stagnant wages. Another tax from this White House could further slow the economy and make it even more difficult for people to find good-paying jobs.”

“The Obama administration’s energy and climate change policies rely on new taxes and regulations that would have damaging effects on the economy of Mississippi and the entire country. A carbon tax would be prohibitively costly to the nation,” Cochran said.

Introduced by Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), the resolution states that a carbon dioxide tax is not in the best interest of the United States because it would increase energy prices, “cause families and consumers to pay more for essential items such as food, gasoline, and electricity,” and “cause the greatest hardship for the poor, the elderly, and individuals living on fixed incomes.”

The resolution further reflects the sense of the Senate that “the energy policy of the United States should encourage private sector innovation and development and not increase the existing tax burden on manufacturers.”

A CO2 tax would be applied to energy resources that have accounted for at least 80 percent of total U.S. energy consumption since 1990, according to the Energy Information Administration.

A companion measure was introduced in the House of Representatives in October 2015. It is cosponsored by Representative Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.).