The Leader Board

Even Within Their Own Caucus, Senate Democrats Are At Odds Over Whether Raising Taxes On Energy Manufacturers Is A Good Idea


Some Senate Dems Call Measure 'Laughable,' 'A Gimmick'

SEN. MARK BEGICH (D-AK): "we will have wasted 2½ days doing nothing on real energy policy in this country, and people are still going to be paying higher gasoline prices." ("Senate Votes To Debate Oil Tax Bill," Politico, 3/26/12)

  • BEGICH: "It won't decrease prices at the pump for our families and small businesses. It will discourage companies, especially the independents, from domestic investment and job creation." (Sen. Begich, Floor Remarks, 5/11/11)

SEN. MARY LANDRIEU (D-LA): "Maybe it's just for [President Obama's] election, which I hope isn't the case." "'That offset is not going to fly, and he should know that… Maybe it's just for his election, which I hope isn't the case.'" ("Hill Dems Pick Apart Obama Jobs Plan," Politico, 9/14/11)


Dem Leaders Admit It's 'Not A Question Of Gas Prices'

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): "This was never intended to talk about lowering prices." (CNN's "The Situation Room," 5/11/11)

SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV): "But it is not a question of gas prices." (Sen. Reid, Floor Remarks, 5/16/11)

SEN. ROBERT MENENDEZ (D-NJ): "Nobody has made the claim that this bill is about reducing gas prices." ("McCaskill: Savings From Cutting Oil Tax Breaks Should Be For Deficit Reduction," The Hill's E2 Wire Blog, 5/10/11)

SEN. MAX BAUCUS (D-MT): "You know, this is not going to change the price at the gasoline pump. That's not the issue. I don't see that as an issue at all." (U.S. Senate, Finance Committee, Hearing, 5/12/11)

SEN. CARL LEVIN (D-MI): "…this proposal will not alter the economic fundamentals that determine gasoline prices." (Sen. Levin, Floor Remarks, 5/16/11)

SEN. MARK BEGICH (D-AK): "A gimmick." "You're right, this piece of legislation they put down without really a committee process on it is a gimmick, a gimmick to get the next week of activity, and get some press out there." (Sen. Begich, Floor Remarks, 5/11/11)

SEN. MARY LANDRIEU (D-LA): "Laughable." "You ask me can I vote for a bill like this. No. Not only can I not vote for it, it's laughable." (Sen. Landrieu, Floor Remarks, 5/11/11)


Avg. Price Of Gas Nationwide Now: $3.92 Per Gallon

("Daily Fuel Gage Report, Current Average, Regular," AAA, 3/29/12)

WASHINGTON POST: "Two months before the summer driving season officially starts, average gasoline prices in the Washington region have shot past $4, the earliest they have ever surpassed that milestone, AAA Mid-Atlantic said Wednesday." ("Gas Prices In Washington Surpass $4 A Gallon," The Washington Post, 3/28/12)

"The cheapest gas is in Wyoming at an average of $3.52 and in Montana with an average of $3.63. Michigan is the sixth most expensive in the country, topped by Hawaii at $4.55, Illinois at $4.31, California at $4.23, Alaska at $4.26 and Washington, D.C." ("Gas Prices Continue To Soar," The Daily Reporter 3/29/12)