January 5, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens today issued the following statement blasting comments from Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) on Fox News Sunday that, “yes, we have proposed raising the gasoline tax — user fee by 12 cents,” and Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) that “I don’t think we take anything off the table at this point”:
“Somehow, Senate Republicans in their push to reclaim the majority in 2014 failed to inform voters of their apparent intention to raise taxes on gasoline by 12 cents, a 65 percent increase from the current 18.4 cent federal gas tax. Lower gas prices were expected to contribute $1 billion to consumer pocket books for every penny the price drops, providing a private sector energy stimulus that might finally boost demand. It is shocking that the so-called party of low taxes’ first response to the good news of lower gas prices is to raise taxes on gas, regardless of any assertions that the proposal might be revenue neutral.
“The last thing the weak economy needs right now is higher taxes. The highway trust fund has been mismanaged since 2008, because the bureaucracy and Congress did not anticipate lower revenue when demand went down from the recession and people drove less — the true reason the fund now faces a $17 billion a year deficit. The solution to our woes is to find ways to boost economic growth and cut spending, not to kill already slack demand.”
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