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By Climate Guest Blogger on Feb 15, 2012 at 10:56 am

by Daniel J. Weiss

As part of the FY 2013 budget released on February 13, President Obama proposed to eliminate $40 billion in tax breaks for oil and gas producers over the next ten years. Yesterday, the Yale Project on Climate Change reiterated its recent finding that Americans of all political stripes oppose subsidies for “coal, oil, and natural gas companies.” They oppose these subsidies by 70 percent to 30 percent – better than two to one.  Republicans oppose these subsidies by 67 percent to 34 percent (reflects rounding of percentages).

Intensity matters in public opinion.  A determined, energetic minority can be quite powerful.  The Yale poll shows that there is much more intensity against oil subsidies than in favor of them.  Americans strongly opposed to the subsidies outnumber those who strongly support them by 31 percent to 3 percent – a 10 to 1 ratio.  Independents – the voters who will likely determine the outcome of the 2012 election – strongly oppose these fossil fuel subsidies by 45 percent to 2 percent.

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