11 Senate Dems urge Biden to ease soaring gas prices

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A group of 11 Senate Democrats penned a letter to President Biden Monday urging him to get a handle on sky-high gas prices.

The memo suggested the president explore options such as releasing supply from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and banning crude oil exports for the sake of giving American wallets a break.

“We agree with your recent comments at the United National Climate Change Conference (COP26) that as the United States works to boost the development of clean and renewable energy over the long-term, we must ensure that Americans are able to afford to fill up their cars at the pump in the meantime,” the letter reads.

The senators included statistics from AAA which revealed that the national average price for a gallon of gasoline is the highest it’s been since 2014 and has increased $1 per gallon since last November.

The near-dozen Democrats said rising prices have “placed an undue burden” on families and small businesses in their own home states, especially those still recovering from the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

A maze of crude oil pipes and valves pictured during a tour by the Department of Energy at the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in Freeport, Texas, U.S., June 9, 2016
The national average price for a gallon of gasoline is the highest it’s been since 2014.
REUTERS/Richard Carson/File Photo

Among the senators who signed were Vermont’s Patrick Leahy, Connecticut’s Richard Blumenthal and former presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren.

This call for action comes after the White House admitted during a press briefing Monday that the president is considering shutting down the L5 pipeline from Michigan to Canada. Deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre admitted Monday that the Army Corps of Engineers is “preparing an environmental impact to look through this.”

More than a dozen Republicans sent a letter to Biden last week warning that shutting the pipeline would hurt the economy and cause home heating costs to soar this winter.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren
Sen. Elizabeth Warren was one of the 11 Senate Democrats who penned the letter to President Joe Biden.
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, Pool

“This irresponsible action will hurt farmers, businesses, and families,” the letter says. “President Biden has already done enough to weaken America’s energy security and international alliances, and the consequences of terminating Line 5 would only heighten these growing challenges.”

Politico reported Thursday that the Department of Energy has opened an “ongoing discussion” about the impact Line 5 would have on energy markets.

White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy met with environmental groups on the matter last month where an attendee suggested a decision could occur following a vote on the trillion-dollar Build Back Better Act.

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