Democratic News

Gasoline prices, which now top $3 a gallon in parts of the country, have become a problem for a lot of people.  Like many Americans, Sens. Pete Domenici (R-NM) and Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Energy Committee, are troubled about how these rapidly rising prices are hurting the economy, consumers and jobs.


On Sept. 8, the Energy Committee will examine this issue at a hearing on gasoline costs and factors contributing to current high prices, such as global oil demand, constraints on refinery capacity and increased speculation in the futures market.  Witnesses will be announced Sept. 2.


“Today’s gasoline prices are taking a severe toll on Americans’ pocketbooks.  Consumers are anxious.  They pull up to a gas pump and they are stunned by the prices.  Economists are concerned.  Steep energy prices like we are seeing crimp consumer spending and blunt their confidence in the economy,” said Chairman Domenici.  “While there is no immediate solution to lower the price of gasoline, this hearing is a start.  I look forward to hearing from government, industry and consumer groups on how to address the challenge of spiraling gasoline prices and the contributing factors.”


“All of us recognize the financial hardships that rising gasoline prices are causing to Americans, especially working families, and how these prices are hurting our businesses and our communities,” Sen. Bingaman added.  “Clearly, we need to have the very best advice and counsel on what actions can be taken to help lower the cost of gasoline.  I very much look forward to listening to what the experts have to say at this important hearing.”


WHAT:      Energy Committee hearing on gas prices

WHEN:      Thursday, Sept. 8, 10:00 a.m.

WHERE:    Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 106