President Biden called for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate major oil and gas companies over rising gas prices on Wednesday.
In yet another attempt to shift blame away from himself. He sent a letter to the head of the Federal Trade Commission, calling her attention to "mounting evidence of anti-consumer behavior by oil and gas companies."
The American Petroleum Institute retaliated by blaming Biden, writing, "This is a distraction from the fundamental market shift that is occurring and the ill-advised government decisions that are exacerbating this difficult situation." … We should be supporting the safe and responsible production of American-made oil and natural gas rather than starting investigations into markets that are controlled and highly monitored on a daily basis or appealing with OPEC to boost supply."
In his letter, Biden stated, “[Gasoline] prices at the pump remain high, even though oil and gas companies’ costs are declining.” He continued, “The Federal Trade Commission has authority to consider whether illegal conduct is costing families at the pump. I believe you should do so immediately.”
Biden asserted that the FTC has already “directed the Commission staff to strengthen oversight of mergers in the oil and gas sector that result in less consumer choice and potentially higher prices.”
As if once were not enough, he reiterated, “[Prices] at the pump have continued to rise, even as refined fuel costs go down and industry profits go up.”
He claimed there was “a large gap between the price of unfinished gasoline and the average price at the pump,” adding, “meanwhile, the largest oil and gas companies in America are generating significant profits off higher energy prices.”
He pontificated, “I do not accept hard-working Americans paying more for gas because of anti-competitive or otherwise potentially illegal conduct. I therefore ask that the Commission further examine what is happening with oil and gas markets, and that you bring all of the Commission’s tools to bear if you uncover any wrongdoing.”
Pres. Biden, saying there is “mounting evidence of anti-consumer behavior by oil and gas companies,” in letter to the FTC: “The Federal Trade Commission has authority to consider whether illegal conduct is costing families at the pump. I believe you should do so immediately.” pic.twitter.com/0SCa26hiqG— Phil Mattingly (@Phil_Mattingly) November 17, 2021
The American Petroleum Institute responded:
This is a distraction from the fundamental market shift that is taking place and the ill-advised government decisions that are exacerbating this challenging situation. Demand has returned as the economy comes back and is outpacing supply. Further impacting the imbalance is the continued decision from the administration to restrict access to America’s energy supply and cancel important infrastructure projects. Rather than launching investigations on markets that are regulated and closely monitored on a daily basis or pleading with OPEC to increase supply, we should be encouraging the safe and responsible development of American-made oil and natural gas.