On Wednesday, President Joe Biden asked Congress to temporarily suspend the federal gas tax to provide Americans monetary relief at the pump.
In a Tweet on Thursday, Utah Gov. Spencer Cox criticized Biden and said the proposal would lead to more deficit spending and more inflation.
“This is not the solution,” Cox said. “We can and should be producing more oil and gas at home.”
The president’s response to inflation is to save us $0.18 at the pump, which will cause more deficit spending and will lead to more inflation.— Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox (@GovCox) June 23, 2022
This is not the solution. We can and should be producing more oil and gas at home. https://t.co/zwDBshNjq9
Currently, Americans pay a federal fuel tax of 18.4 cents per gallon of gasoline and 24.4 cents per gallon of diesel.
This isn’t the first time Cox hasn’t been in favor of removing a gas tax.
During a news conference in March, Cox was asked about removing the state fuel tax, 31.9 cents a gallon. He responded that it was a “really bad idea” and raised concerns about funding for the Utah Department of Transportation.
Cox hasn’t been the only Utah leader to criticize Biden’s proposal.
In a recent Fox News appearance, Republican Sen. Mike Lee called the move “treacherous” to the American people because it would drive inflation higher.
Lee said the revenue from the federal gas tax goes to keeping up the interstate system and questioned where the money would come from without the tax. He said it would lead to more borrowing and printing of money that would subsequently lead to increased inflation.
“That’s why this is treacherous,” Lee said. “This is wrong, and we can’t let it happen.”
Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, also criticized the president saying in a tweet “the problem’s not the 18 cents, it’s the $2.00 hike since last year.”
Biden gas tax gimmick fail: the problem’s not the 18 cents, it’s the $2.00 hike since last year. While oil price is global, US can impact expectations with much more drilling and pipelines. https://t.co/lyQRtYGtSS— Senator Mitt Romney (@SenatorRomney) June 22, 2022
According to AAA, the average price of gas in Utah as of Thursday is $5.19 a gallon, the highest on record. The average price of diesel in Utah is $5.69, also breaking records. Only a year ago, gasoline in Utah averaged $3.44 and diesel was $3.47.