The multi-billionaire founder of online department store Amazon Jeff Bezos accused US President Joe Biden of either misleading or cheating by calling on fuel distributors to cut prices immediately, prompting White House officials to rush to the head of state’s defense.
“My message to the companies that operate gas stations and set prices at the pump is simple: we are in a time of war and global danger”the US president said via Twitter on Saturday. “Reduce the prices you charge at the pump to reflect the cost you pay for the product. And do it now”.
For Mr. Bezos, presidential reasoning is “either an attempt to mislead, or a profound misunderstanding of basic market dynamics”. “Inflation is too serious a problem for the White House to keep making statements like this,” the world’s third-richest man added.
The ignition of retail prices of fuela symbol of the broader rise in the cost of living in the world’s largest economy, is sinking the popularity of the Democratic president, who often accuses the oil giants of profiteering and making no effort to fix the problem.
These latter argue that they have increased their production and the operation of their refineries, but prices are set in the global market and are subject to dynamics beyond their control, as reported by international agencies and relayed by the Athens News Agency.
White House spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre was quick to defend him yesterday Joe Biden, noting, also via Twitter, that “oil prices fell by about $15 last month”, but nevertheless those at gas stations “have barely decreased”. “This is not about ‘fundamental market dynamics.’ This is a market that is draining the American consumer,” he added.
The gallon (the 3.8 liters) of gasoline in the US exceeded the symbolic limit of 5 dollars for the first time in early June. It has eased somewhat since then, but remains far from the $3.10 where it was a year ago.
John Kirby, the newly appointed White House communications coordinator for strategic issues, also defended Joe Biden’s position on Sunday during an interview he gave to the conservative Fox television network.
“The president is working very hard, on a number of fronts (…) to bring prices down” at the pump, he assured, before referring, among other things, to his proposal to suspend the federal fuel consumption tax – subject to approval by Congress – as well as in his decision to release large amounts of US strategic oil reserves.
Of course, Mr. Biden “knows this isn’t going to solve all the problems, but it would help if everybody worked together and we were able to get prices down by about $1 a gallon,” he added.
Source: News Beast