Record High Gas Prices Reflect Democrats’ Misunderstanding
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding gas prices:
“Today, the average price that American families pay for regular unleaded set an all-time high for the tenth day in a row. Ten straight days of record-breaking gas prices.
“Getting to work, running errands, driving to church, visiting loved ones, hitting the highway for a modest family vacation — all of it costs 88% more at the pump today than it cost when President Biden put his hand on that Bible.
“And it’s not even Memorial Day yet. The unofficial summer driving season hasn’t even begun.
“To be clear, this is not just ‘Putin’s price hike.’ The year 2021 saw the biggest one-year gas price increase in three decades and that was before Russia’s escalation in Ukraine.
“Farmers and ranchers, truckers, and small business owners are struggling to keep their tractors, eighteen-wheelers, and other work vehicles full of diesel. And so, in addition to having to fill up their own tanks, working families are paying for high fuel prices again at the checkout counter.
“One constituent in Johnson County wrote to my office to lament that ‘rapidly increasing gas prices are making it difficult for everyday people like me to make ends meet.’ He said he’s facing ‘rising costs’ but ‘stagnant wages.’
“Another in Ashland described driving past a gas station on his way to work and seeing that prices had hit $4.25 a gallon. He said he’s ‘fortunate to be able to pay those prices,’ but worried ‘others would have to start giving up other things to just put gas in their car.’
“A third in Brandenburg was dismayed that the Biden Administration decided to kill energy lease sales while gas prices are raging. He noted how “the timing and nature of this decision display a disturbing disregard” for the situation facing American families.
“Since Day One, from cancelling Keystone XL to freezing leases for new exploration, President Biden himself has put American energy independence on the chopping block.
“But while Americans suffer, the far left just digs in deeper.
“Just yesterday Energy Secretary Granholm said the ‘volatility in prices’ was just more reason to ‘accelerate’ the supposedly green energy transition that Democrats have tried to force on the country for years.
“Forget that their preferred energy sources aren’t yet reliable or cost-effective.
“Forget that they would just be exchanging one kind of foreign dependence for new kinds of foreign dependence, on Russian critical minerals and Chinese supply chains for solar panels and batteries.
“Democrats’ proposals fall embarrassingly short.
“I understand the House is wasting its time pretending that inflation is all the fault of evil corporate profiteers. I guess the profit motive hadn’t been invented yet in 2019 when Republicans had unemployment low and inflation low at the same time.
“The liberal economist Larry Summers calls the House Democrats’ bill, ‘dangerous nonsense.’
“Jason Furman, another senior Obama advisor, has said the far left claims about so-called ‘greed-flation’ are in fact, ‘unequivocally wrong and confused.’
“The Biden Administration has also drained our Strategic Petroleum Reserve to its lowest level since 1987 in a frantic effort to lower prices. Predictably, this gimmick failed, and now we are much less prepared for a possible future crisis.
“You will recall that Senate Democrats gleefully blocked Republicans from refilling the Strategic Reserve to the top back in 2020 when oil was at rock-bottom prices. We could have filled the Reserve to the top when crude was on a clearance sale, but Democrats blocked it and bragged about doing so.
“Washington Democrats keep finding new ways to fundamentally misunderstand Americans’ energy needs.”
Related Issues: Senate Democrats, Inflation, Keystone XL Pipeline, Energy, Economy, China