Coronavirus Bailout: Now Trump wants to pay oil companies to keep it in the ground

  • Published on July 2nd, 2020

Mind-boggling. Trump is doing everything he can to bail out the oil companies, never mind the rest of us. The latest: an upside-down version of Keep It In The Ground.

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By RL Miller

His wish list started with topping off the Strategic Petroleum Reserve — a bailout to the oil industry. Congress refused to appropriate any money for it. Now he’s considering paying taxpayer dollars to the oil industry for them to not extract any oil – until he orders them to burn it.

That last point is key. Climate campaigners have run a “Keep It In the Ground” campaign to require oil companies to not extract their product.

But under Trump’s bizarre version, taxpayers would subsidize the oil companies only until oil gets expensive. Then Trump could order the oil companies to extract and burn it for profit.

And if that idea seriously looks like it’s in play for the fourth stimulus bill, we’ll be asking you to email (not call) your Representative.

You didn’t really think the taxpayers would get reimbursed out of that profit, did you?

Climate Hawks Vote has signed on to the People’s Bailout – a set of demands that any further bailout put health first, put money directly into the hands of people, rescue workers (not executives), make a down payment on a regenerative economy and protect our democracy.

Congress needs to pass legislation helping you and me, not oil company CEOs.

Meanwhile, the Trump regime is rushing ahead with rules making a mockery of our democracy – dirtier cars, mercury poison, rollbacks of every rule designed to protect the air we breathe and the water we drink.

Now he’s proposing to turn every oil basin in America into part of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve – until it’s profitable for oil companies, never mind the climate.

Let’s bail out the people, not oil companies.

Your fellow climate hawk (nesting at home),

RL Miller

P.S. Like many other nonprofit organizations, Climate Hawks Vote has been hit hard by the coronavirus economic downturn. If you appreciate what we do and wish to support our work watchdogging Trump, please consider a donation.

About the Author

The chair of the Democratic Environmental Caucus, RL Miller also runs Climate Hawks Vote, which backs candidates for office who are serious about taking action on climate change.

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