House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on June 22 was noncommittal on President Joe Biden’s request to suspend the gas tax for three months.
“We will see where the consensus lies on a path forward for the President’s proposal in the House and the Senate,” Pelosi said in a statement, noting that House Democrats have passed several bills meant to lower gas prices, such as one that would bar gas stations from price gouging.
None of the bills have been voted on by the Senate.
Biden, shortly before Pelosi’s statement, said in remarks from the White House that Congress suspending the tax for 90 days would “give families just a little bit of relief.”
The government charges a tax of 18 cents per gallon, and the tax helps fund the Highway Trust Fund.
Congress should also allocate approximately $10 billion, which is the projected shortfall for the fund if the tax suspension is passed, according to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm.
“We’ll still be able to fix our highways and bring down the prices of gas” if that happens, Biden said. “We can do both at the same time.”
Gas prices have skyrocketed since Biden took office in January 2021. The national average, as measured by the American Automobile Association (AAA), crossed $5 a gallon for the first time ever this month.
Support in Congress is mixed for a gas tax suspension, even among Democrats.
Rep. Tom O’Halleran (D-Ariz.), who introduced legislation that would suspend the tax, cheered Biden’s call.
“This gas tax suspension would put money directly back into their pockets, lower shipping costs, and help address inflation—I encourage the president to extend his suspension ask to the end of this year,” he said in a statement.
Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), expressed the opposite view, calling a suspension “a shortsighted and inefficient way to provide relief.”
Democrats control both chambers in Congress, but would need Republican support to pass a suspension in the S... (Read more)
Submitted 11 days ago