Rep. Levin takes aim at international tax breaks to pay for green energy bill

During the recent debate on the tax extenders bill, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) failed to repeal about $35 billion in oil and gas industry tax breaks by a 35 to 61 vote. Several Democrats joined Republicans in opposing the measure.

However, pro-business Ways and Means Democrats could balk at increasing taxes on U.S. multinationals. Several of them have argued in the past that international tax breaks should only be modified in the context of tax reform. 

Their support will likely depend on which foreign tax breaks Levin repeals, if he uses them at all.

The energy bill is expected to extend through 2014 the Section 48C manufacturing tax credit for investing in renewable energy. 

The tax credit was created in the 2009 stimulus bill and has been touted by President Obama as being instrumental in helping companies become energy efficient. The Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimates the extension will cost approximately $6.9 billion. 

The proposal is also expected to extend the ethanol tax credit for one-year, but at a reduced rate, from 45 cents to 36 cents per gallon, costing about $3.8 billion, according to the JCT. 

Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) is also trying to clear a green energy jobs bill from his committee. It's a complicated effort considering his staff plays a central role in moving the small business jobs bill and extending the Bush tax cuts. 

Earlier today, Baucus would not say whether his energy bill would mirror the House proposal.