ABC News' Sunlen Miller reports:
Noting that oil companies announced a 30 percent increase in profits this year while Americans are struggling with $4-per-gallon gas prices, President Obama called on Congress, yet again, in his weekly address to end taxpayer subsidies for oil companies.
“While rising gas prices mean real pain for our families at the pump, they also mean bigger profits for oil companies,” Obama said. “This week, the largest oil companies announced that they’d made more than $25 billion in the first few months of 2011 – up about 30 percent from last year.”
The president said he does not have a problem with any company being rewarded for their successes, “but I do have a problem with the unwarranted taxpayer subsidies we’ve been handing out to oil and gas companies – to the tune of $4 billion a year.”
The president said it is just not right or smart.
“When oil companies are making huge profits and you’re struggling at the pump, and we’re scouring the federal budget for spending we can afford to do without, these tax giveaways aren’t right," he said. "They aren’t smart. And we need to end them.”
The Republicans’ weekly address also focused on gas prices.
“Americans are looking for leadership to tackle the rising gas prices, but President Obama has only offered a tax increase on energy and the prospect of reduced supply,” said Rep. James Lankford, R-Okla. "For more than two years, his administration has knowingly increased energy prices by choking off new sources of traditional American energy and smothering our economy in new energy regulations. His latest proposal – hiking taxes by billions of dollars – will not lower gas prices and would actually make the problem worse.“