Joe Biden calls for gas taxes suspension for three months while blaming ‘Putin’s murderous ways’
Posted by  badge  on Jun 23
President Joe Biden called on Congress to approve a 90-day federal gas tax holiday (Pictures: YouTube/The White House)

President has called for a three-month suspension to the federal gasoline and diesel tax, in an effort to ease prices at the pump for Americans.

Speaking from the White House on Wednesday afternoon, Biden urged Congress to approve a 90-day gas and diesel tax holiday ‘through the busy summer season, the busy travel season’.

The federal tax for gas is about 18 cents per gallon, and 24 cents per gallon for diesel.

‘I call on the companies to pass this along, every penny of this 18-cent reduction, to consumers,’ said Biden. ‘There’s no time now for profiteering.’

Biden also urged states to either suspend their gas taxes, which average about 30 cents, or ‘find some other ways to deliver some relief’.

The president said he fully understands that a gas tax holiday alone is not sufficient, but that the action would provide ‘a little bit of breathing room as we work to bring down gas prices’ to a more reasonable level.

Biden’s last request was for the energy industry to refine more oil into gasoline to in turn lower gas prices. He urged companies to use their profits to increase refining capacity instead of buying back their own stock.

Energy companies are slated to meet with Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm on Thursday regarding ways to boost supply.

President Joe Biden called for states to pause their gas taxes or ‘find some other ways to deliver some relief’ (Pictures: Reuters/REX)

The three actions together could drop the price per gallon by up to a dollar or more, he said.

Biden closed by recapping ‘how we got here’ – Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. The US and its European allies cut off Russian oil, knowing higher gas prices would come as a result, he said.

‘We could have turned a blind eye to Putin’s murderous ways. The price of gas wouldn’t have spiked the way it has,’ Biden said. ‘I believe that would have been wrong. I believe then and I believe now that the free world had no choice.

America could not stand by and the West could not have stood by – although some suggested at the time – and watched Putin’s tanks roll into Ukraine and seize a sovereign country. If we did stand by, Putin wouldn’t have stopped.’

The price of gas has risen by almost two dollars per gallon in the US since the start of the Russia-Ukraine war, and more in other parts of the world.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in February ridiculed a gas tax holiday idea, saying Democrats have ‘spent an entire year waging a holy war on affordable American energy, and now they want to use a pile of taxpayers’ money to hide the consequences’.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has also expressed doubt around the usefulness of pausing the federal gas tax.