President Barack Obama on Saturday outlined three “good sense” steps he says his administration and Congress should take to deal with a spike in gasoline prices, oil drilling, and tax breaks for oil companies.
Obama framed the steps outlined on Saturday as ways of dealing with insufficient job growth and rising gasoline prices.
The steps are a mix of solutions to deal with near, and long term energy challenges the U.S. faces.
These spikes in gas prices are often temporary, and while there are no quick fixes to the problem, there are a few steps we should take that make good sense, Obama said.
The first step tackles a pocket book issue which seeks legal action against speculators.
“We’ve launched a task force led by the Attorney General that has one job: rooting out cases of fraud or manipulation in the markets that might affect gas prices, including any illegal activity by traders and speculators,” Obama said.
Obama said the U.S. should expand oil production in the United States.
He said the U.S. would conduct annual lease sales in Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve and lease new areas in the Gulf of Mexico. He said this would include streamlinging the permitting process
The third step will be to eliminate the $4 billion in annual subsidies to the oil companies.
He urged Congress to end the “giveaways” to oil companies at a time “when Americans can barely fill up their tanks” and “when we’re trying to reduce our deficit.”
He said he hoped Democrats and Republicans could vote “to get this done” in scheduled vote next week.