Although the price of gasoline has fallen slightly, President Joe Biden is considering a gas tax holiday to give Americans a break at the pump.
"Yes, I'm considering it," Biden told reporters near his vacation home in Delaware, his home state. "I hope to have a decision based on the data — I'm looking for by the end of the week."
The federal gas tax is 18.4 cents a gallon. It isn't clear if a gas tax holiday — a temporary suspension of the tax — would be for the full amount or a portion. A downside of the tax break is that it would increase the deficit without offsetting the cost elsewhere in the federal budget. (The taxes on gas and diesel help to pay for highways.)
Gas prices are averaging just under $5 a gallon nationwide, according to AAA. The retail price of gasoline had been rising since 2021 but then really spiked after Russia invaded Ukraine in February.
The Biden administration has been pushing oil companies to do their part to bring down prices. The president has lashed out at the industry, saying the companies are excessive profits when U.S. consumers are feeling the crunch of skyrocketing costs at the pump and inflation.
"I want an explanation for why they aren't refining more oil," Biden said.
Earlier this year, Biden signed off on the release of oil from the U.S. strategic reserve and also approved increased ethanol blending for the summer. But prices continued to rise, leading the White House to consider the gas tax holiday.
"Many states also have gasoline taxes so maybe they'll jump on too," The Wall Street Journal's Jon Hilsenrath told Fox Report on Sunday. "But it doesn't look to me like that's enough to solve the squeeze that we're going through."
With The Associated Press and Fox News.