New survey data out this week shows that U.S. voters—regardless of party affiliation—overwhelmingly support a windfall profits tax on U.S. oil corporations that are using Russia's war on Ukraine to hike prices at the pump.
"GOP and industry disinformation is failing to convince people—voters know Big Oil is to blame."
According to polling results released by the League of Conservation Voters, 80% of U.S. voters—including 73% of Republicans—support "placing a windfall profits tax on the extra profits oil companies are making from the higher gasoline prices they are charging because of the Russia-Ukraine situation."
More broadly, 87% of U.S. voters want Congress and President Joe Biden to "crack down on price gouging and excessive price increases by oil companies that result in higher gas prices at the pump."
Jamie Henn, director of Fossil Free Media, said in a statement Friday that the survey data shows voters "know who is to blame for high gas prices: Big Oil."
"For politicians on both sides of the aisle, this polling is proof that their constituents overwhelmingly support the idea of a windfall profits tax that would stop Big Oil profiteering and send relief directly to consumers," Henn added. "If members of Congress refuse to act, it'll be concrete evidence that they’re in the pockets of the industry."
The fresh polling came days after a group of House and Senate Democrats unveiled legislation that would hit large, highly profitable oil companies with "a per-barrel tax equal to 50% of the difference between the current price of a barrel of oil and the pre-pandemic average price per barrel between 2015 and 2019."
"Once more for the people in the back: rising oil prices are being caused by corporate greed."
"Revenue raised from the windfall profits of big oil companies will be returned to consumers in the form of a quarterly rebate, which would phase out for single filers who earn more than $75,000 in annual income and joint filers who earn more than $150,000," according to a summary released by the office of Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), the bill's lead sponsor in the House.
After an initial surge following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, oil prices have fallen in recent days—but gas prices in the U.S. have remained elevated, bolstering the narrative that corporate profiteering is driving up costs at the pump.
"Oil prices are decreasing, gas prices should too," President Joe Biden wrote in a Twitter post on Wednesday. "Last time oil was $96 a barrel, gas was $3.62 a gallon. Now it's $4.31. Oil and gas companies shouldn’t pad their profits at the expense of hardworking Americans."
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), the chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, echoed the president's message.
"Once more for the people in the back: rising oil prices are being caused by corporate greed," Jayapal wrote.