‘I didn’t know they’d get their feelings hurt that quickly’: Biden mocks oil executives complaining about his criticism as he hints he’s open to a federal gas tax

  • President Joe Biden mocked oil CEOs who complained about his criticism 
  • Biden was asked about Chevron Chief Executive Michael Wirth, who wrote to Biden to say his administration was ‘vilifying’ the gas industry
  • ‘He’s mildly sensitive,’ Biden quipped. ‘I didn’t know they’d get their feelings hurt that quickly’
  • Biden’s administration is under pressure to do something about gas prices as the national average hit $5 a gallon 
  • Biden said he’d have a final matter on suspending the gas tax by the end of the week but seemed to indicate he was considering it

President Joe Biden on Wednesday mocked oil CEOs who complained about his criticism, saying he didn’t know they’d get their feelings so hurt as he hinted he was open to a federal gas tax.

Biden was asked about Chevron Chief Executive Michael Wirth, who wrote to Biden to say his administration was ‘vilifying’ the gas industry.

‘He’s mildly sensitive,’ Biden quipped. ‘I didn’t know they’d get their feelings hurt that quickly.’ 

Earlier this month, Biden blasted oil companies for making record profits and urged them to increase oil production to alleviate gasoline prices.

‘Your administration has largely sought to criticize, and at times vilify, our industry,’ Wirth said in response in a letter addressed to President Biden. ‘These actions are not beneficial to meeting the challenges we face.’

President Joe Biden mocked oil CEOs who complained about his criticism, saying he didn’t know they’d get their feelings so hurt

President Biden's administration is under pressure to do something about gas prices as the national average hit $5 a gallon

President Biden’s administration is under pressure to do something about gas prices as the national average hit $5 a gallon

The administration has been weighing different options to give Americans relief at the pump, where the national average for a gallon of gas has hit over $5.

Biden said he’d have a final matter on suspending the gas tax by the end of the week but seemed to indicate he was considering it.

He said on Tuesday a potential suspension of the federal gas tax would have some, but not significant, impact on highway funds.

‘It will have some impact but it’s not going to impact major road construction and major repair,’ he said. 

And when asked if that meant he had made a decision, Biden repeated his earlier claim he would decide by the end of the week on whether to ask Congress to suspend the tax to help with high gas prices. 

The revenue from the gas tax is used to help fund highway and other transportation projects.

He said the federal government has plenty of funds to pay for his infrastructure plan even if the gas tax was suspended.

‘We have plenty of capacity to do that,’ he said. 

'Your administration has largely sought to criticize, and at times vilify, our industry,' Chevron Chief Executive Michael Wirth said in response in a letter addressed to President Biden

‘Your administration has largely sought to criticize, and at times vilify, our industry,’ Chevron Chief Executive Michael Wirth said in response in a letter addressed to President Biden

Biden, on Monday, also uggested there was a possibility of sending out gas rebate cards, similar to those proposed in states such as California. 

And he said his staff would be meeting with oil CEOs to discuss the nation’s high gas prices. 

‘My team is going to be sitting down with the CEOs of major oil companies this week and deciding to get an explanation on how they justify making 35 billion dollars in the first quarter,’ Biden said. 

And he took a swat at former President Donald Trump’s tax reform bill, which lowered corporate tax rates – something Biden said the U.S. could look at again as it combats 41-year high inflation. 

‘Going out and buying a yacht doesn’t help the economy a whole lot,’ the president said. 

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