Commodities News

Biden rejects Republican criticism of his energy policy

By Steve Holland and Eric Beech

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Joe Biden on Thursday rejected Republican accusations that he is holding back production of oil in the United States amid a ban on Russian oil imports that is helping drive up the cost of gasoline.

In remarks to the winter meeting of the Democratic National Committee, Biden said Americans are feeling the pain at the pump from a spike in gas prices because of Russia’s war on Ukraine but “they know that as painful as the price is today, the costs are going to be higher if we do not act now” against Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The United States has imposed several rafts of sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine two weeks ago, including Biden on Tuesday imposing an immediate ban on Russian oil and other energy imports.

Republicans have accused Biden of slowing energy production as he tries to turn the United States toward greener policies and that this is a chief factor in rising prices.

Biden blamed the spike on “Putin’s price hikes” and that oil companies need no incentive to produce more.

“The CEOs of major oil companies have said they’ll increase investment and production. They have the capacity to do it,” he said.

He also warned against profiteering in a time of war.

“In this time of war, it’s not a time of profit. It’s time for reinvesting in America,” said Biden.

Democrats are searching for a way to hold on to control of the U.S. Congress in November congressional elections.

The party holding the White House in the first congressional elections after a presidential election typically loses seats. Republicans say they are confident about making gains.

Biden said if Democrats do not hold on to Congress “it’s going to be a sad, sad two years” until the 2024 presidential election.

Source : Reuters

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