… wins again.
House Majority Leader John Boehner’s attempt to lower the ethanol tariff (and thus allow ethanol-hungry oil refineries to purchase ethanol from overseas) has gone down in flames:
Boehner, who is from Ohio, said last week that the United States was not producing enough ethanol to meet demand and that a temporary reduction in the 54-cent-a-gallon tariff could help boost available supplies and lower gasoline prices.
Farm state lawmakers, whose corn-grower constituents supply the feedstock for making the vast majority of U.S. ethanol, strongly oppose easing the U.S. tariffs on foreign, and therefore competing, ethanol shipments.
The Renewable Fuels Association, the ethanol industry trade group whose members include giant agriprocessor Archer Daniels Midland Co., said in a recent letter to House and Senate leadership that "removing the tariff will have no impact on what American drivers are paying at the pump."
That’s what happens when "energy independence" meets political exigencies: bipartisan protectionism.