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Senate kills bill targeting $2 billion in Big Oil subsidies


WASHINGTON — The US Senate defeated a bill taking aim at some $2 billion in annual subsidies to some of the world's largest and most profitable oil companies amid deep voter anger at high gasoline prices.

Lawmakers voted 52-48 to end debate on the measure, falling short of the 60 required and effectively killing a proposal that the White House's Democratic allies had portrayed as a belt-tightening step in cash-strapped Washington.

Democrats planned to revive the proposal -- which would have affected oil giants BP America, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Shell -- as part of broader spending-cut talks ahead of a vote on raising the US debt ceiling.

"I am confident that before we finish our budget negotiations here, in anticipation of raising the debt ceiling, that that will be part of it," said Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

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