Biden calls for gas tax holiday, but it’s not a ‘total game changer’ and could even cause ‘unintended effect’



President Biden on Wednesday called on Congress to suspend the 18-cent federal gas tax for the summer amid record-high prices at the pump, but industry analysts say the move would save drivers only a few dollars and could spark an “unintended effect.”

With average gas prices hovering around $5 a gallon, Biden is pushing Congress to approve a three-month gas tax holiday through September. Also on Wednesday, the president called on states to suspend their own gas taxes or help consumers in other ways.

Gas prices have surged since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, hitting record highs last week. The average for regular in Massachusetts spiked up to $5.04 on June 12 before falling back below $5 a gallon this week.

“The price of gas is up by almost $2 a gallon since Putin accelerated his military build-up, and those high prices pose a challenge for working families,” Biden tweeted on Wednesday.

“Today, I’m calling on Congress to suspend the federal gas tax for three months to provide Americans some much-needed relief,” he added.

While other states, like Connecticut and New York, have suspended their gas taxes, Democrats in the Massachusetts State House have continued to reject Republican proposals for a gas tax holiday.

In addition to Biden calling on states to suspend their gas taxes or provide equivalent relief, he’s also urging oil companies to increase output and the industry to pass along the decrease in oil prices. Taken together, these actions could drop prices at the pump up to $1 a gallon, according to the White House.



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