Romney Adviser Complains About High Taxes but Fails to Mention His Company’s Paltry 2.2% Tax Rate

Pardon me if I don’t feel any sympathy for Harold Hamm …

In a congressional hearing Thursday, Continental Resources CEO and Mitt Romney’s chief energy adviser Harold Hamm asked to preserve the oil industry’s billions in tax breaks, although his company pays little in federal taxes. The oil firm has earned more than $1.8 billion profit over five years by dominating the oil shale boom in North Dakota.

In his prepared testimony, Hamm defends tax breaks by pointing to his own company, saying, “Continental’s effective tax rate is 38%!” But according to Citizens for Tax Justice, Continental paid an average 2.2 percent tax rate, or $40 million, over five years.

So if you’re playing along at home, Harold Hamm’s company has earned $1.8 billion in profit over the past five years but has averaged just 2.2% in federal income taxes, and in one year (2009) Hamm’s company paid only 0.1% in federal income taxes. How much lower does Harold Hamm think his company’s taxes need to be in order to not be “high?”

Yeah, so much for Scott Walker’s “local control”

Remember when Republican Gov. Scott Walker would tell anyone listening about how he favored giving local governments more “local control?” Yeah, so much for all that talk about “local control …”

Water bill discounts are being made available to hundreds of additional Milwaukee businesses in a move orchestrated by two appointees of Gov. Scott Walker, rankling city leaders who say they were not consulted about the change.

The Public Service Commission first approved the special business discounts last year, at the same time it increased rates for businesses and homeowners by an average of 24%.

In a 2-1 vote last month, the two PSC commissioners appointed by Walker extended the pilot project and removed some requirements that they considered too restrictive. The change effectively makes the discounts available to about 500 existing Milwaukee Water Works customers, up from about 160 previously.

So apparently Gov. Walker favors local control when it suits him, and when it doesn’t, bring on the Walker-appointed Madison bureaucrats!

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