Gas Tax Suspension Requested By U.S. Leaders

( As oil prices have soared to new heights, Democratic governors in six states are asking the federal government for relief so drivers in their states don’t have to dig as deep into their pockets to fill up their vehicles.

The six governors wrote a letter to the four party leaders in Congress, asking the government to suspend the federal gas tax while fuel prices continue to spike following Russia invading its neighbor Ukraine.

The letter was sent to the two Democratic leaders in Congress — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer — as well as the two Republican leaders — House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

In it, the governors stated they support a bill that was introduced by three Democrats from Michigan that would suspend this federal gas tax for what’s left of 2022.

The governors who signed the letter were Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan, Tony Evers of Wisconsin, Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania, Michelle Lujan Grisham of New Mexico, Jared Polis of Colorado and Tim Walz of Minnesota.

The letter reads:

“Money saved at the pump translates into dollars back into consumers’ pockets for groceries, childcare, rent and more.”

The federal gas tax is currently 18.4 cents per gallon. It has sat at that rate since 1993.

On Wednesday, AAA reported that the average price of one gallon of gas in the United States was $4.252. That was a five-cent increase from the day before and a whopping 80-cent increase from just one month prior.

Last year at this time, the average price of one gallon of gas was $2.796. That means that, year-over-year, gas is now 52% more expensive.

The bill the governors are throwing their support behind was introduced by three Democratic members of the House who are all from Michigan. Their proposal would replace the revenue the revenue that’s in the Highway Trust Fund that the federal government would then forgo as a result of suspending the gas tax.

The governors further said the fund wouldn’t run out of money in the near future because it also was given $118 billion as part of the bipartisan infrastructure bill that was passed by Congress and signed by President Joe Biden late last year.

Of the six governors who signed the letter, five are running for re-election this year, while the sixth — Wolf — can’t run for re-election due to term limits in Pennsylvania.

Democrats around the country are extremely worried about how rising prices will reflect on their own re-election campaigns later this year. In addition to the monumental increase in gas prices, Americans are basically paying significantly more for just about every consumer good.

This is something that Biden himself acknowledged recently. Earlier this week, following the announcement that the U.S. would ban all Russian energy imports, the president admitted:

“The decision today is not without cost here at home. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s war is already hurting American families at the gas pump. I’m going to do everything I can to mimize Putin’s price hike here at home.”