"The Nation's outdated tax laws currently provide the oil and gas industry billions of dollars per year in these subsidies, even though oil and gas prices are high and the industry is reporting outsized profits," the statement said. "Furthermore, heads of the major oil and gas companies have in the past made it clear that high oil prices provide more than enough profit motive to invest in domestic exploration and production without special tax breaks."

The statement added that the U.S. "cannot afford to maintain these wasteful subsidies."

Republicans on Tuesday afternoon argued that oil companies receive tax breaks that many other U.S. companies receive and raising taxes on oil companies would do nothing to lower the price of gasoline.