The ethanol industry is claiming victory with its stoppage of John McCain's (R-AZ) amendment to an agriculture appropriations bill that would've prevented the government from subsidizing E85 blender pumps.
Senator McCain proposed the amendment on October 17, but quickly withdrew it on October 19 due to "timing issues", according to Brian Rogers, a spokesman for McCain.
The ethanol industry calls that a win, with Brian Jennings, executive vice president of the American Coalition for Ethanol, stating:
Now we can continue to encourage Congress to focus on forward-thinking energy policy such as promoting more blender pumps, flexible fuel vehicles and consumer fuel choice.
Meanwhile, Tom Buis, chief executive officer of Growth Energy, called McCain's amendment "ill-conceived" and says the passage of any law that restricts federal funding of the U.S. ethanol infrastructure would strengthen the role of foreign oil.
This marks the second time McCain has proposed the elimination of ethanol blender pump subsidies. It seems quite likely that McCain, who's not a fan of ethanol subsidies in any form, will revisit this topic. A McCain spokesman said, "It's an issue that'll be addressed going forward."