Gas prices remain astronomically high — especially in California, which pays the highest for gas in the U.S. — but Rep. Adam Schiff believes he has an answer.
In his heated election year, the economy and cost of living are central issues — and those include skyrocketing gas prices.
Political leaders point to the war in Ukraine, ongoing supply chain issues, the coronavirus pandemic and price gouging as contributing factors.
Officials say while consumers are bleeding, big oil is profiting — wildly.
The five biggest companies including Shell, Chevron and ExxonMobil “have increased their profits by over 300% in the first quarter of the year compared to 2021,” said Schiff, a Democrat.
Schiff spoke with reporters in Los Feliz, saying he has a plan to pop the bubble and make life easier for consumers.
Schiff is introducing new legislation which he hopes will become a bipartisan effort.
He wants to suspend the federal gas tax until the end of 2023, which is currently about 18 cents per gallon.
“This will lower prices at the pump and bring immediate relief to drivers everywhere,” Schiff said.
Schiff explained the federal gas tax pays for highway construction and improvements, mass transit and other important projects.
In its absence, he would make the large oil companies pay the costs, levying a new 50% tax on their “windfall” or excess profits.
“We know that they can certainly foot the bill … I’m convinced this will work. We have toyed with the idea of a windfall profits tax on these excess oil company profits. We haven’t really ever done it, and I think it’s the one thing that will keep in check this gouging by the oil companies,” he said.