Biden to call on Congress to pass three-month gas tax holiday
Vulnerable Democrats have encouraged the president to take any measure necessary to ease the price at the pump for Americans.
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President Joe Biden is planning to call on Congress on Wednesday to pass legislation that will establish a federal gas tax holiday for three months as part of the administration's effort to lower prices at the pump.
The tax holiday would lower the price of a gallon by 18 cents as summer travel season begins. The proposed legislation would cost a reported $10 billion, according to the White House.
On a call with reporters, a senior White House official said, "With our deficit already down by a historic $1.6 trillion this year, the president believes that we can afford to suspend the gas tax to help consumers while using other revenues to make the trust fund whole for the roughly $10 billion cost."
The administration has also said it would structure the measure in a way that would not funnel funds away from the Highway Trust Fund, which receives its revenue from fuel taxes. Some lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have cited the Highway Trust Fund as the reason they would potentially refrain from supporting a gas tax holiday.
Vulnerable Democrats have called on Biden to support the temporary tax break ahead of the November midterm.
The president has argued that higher gas prices are a result of Russia invading Ukraine, calling them "Putin's price hike." But Americans have failed to buy into the narrative. Biden is scheduled to deliver remarks Wednesday afternoon about the plan, which he floated for days.
He will reportedly call on state and local governments to pause state sales tax on fuel, which some states have already done.
On Tuesday, according to data from AAA, the national average price for a gallon of gas was $4.96.