Fox's Gibson: Democrats have, then don't have, then have, a plan to address high gas pricesApril 28, 2006 11:45 AM EDT ››› BEN ARMBRUSTER
On the April 26 edition of Fox News' The Big Story, host John Gibson contradicted himself twice while discussing whether Democrats have a plan to combat high gasoline prices. He first cited "a windfall-profits tax" as an example of their "plan," then said he "never heard an actual Democrat plan," and finally noted that President Bush was following the advice of Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) by "ordering an investigation to see if there's been any manipulation of the gasoline price out in the market."
Gibson began by reporting that the Democrats' "plan" to lower gas prices "includes a windfall-profits tax on oil companies," a proposal that President Bush and the congressional Republican leadership have resisted. Yet, a little more than two minutes later, in an interview with Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), Gibson declared: "[Y]esterday, I asked a Democrat, [U.S. Rep.] Nita Lowey [NY], what's the Democrats' plan, and I never heard an actual Democrat plan, all I heard was criticism of President Bush." He then asked Brownback: "Have you seen anything now that has been trotted out by the Democrats that amounts to an alternative plan for this oil problem that's different than what the president is suggesting?" Just moments after that, Gibson noted Schumer's call to investigate whether oil companies have engaged in price gouging.
Democrats have, in fact, offered proposals to address rising energy costs. On April 18, Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) both called for a federal investigation into possible price manipulation by oil companies and refiners. On April 25, Sen. Robert Menendez filed an amendment to a House emergency supplemental appropriations bill that would suspend the federal tax on gasoline for 60 days while simultaneously repealing federal subsidies to major oil companies. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) announced she will introduce a bill that "would repeal $5 billion in tax breaks for oil companies and give an immediate $500 tax rebate to families to offset high energy costs." Additionally, on April 18, 15 Senate Democrats sent a letter to President Bush asking him to support anti-price-gouging legislation and to renew their call for a bipartisan energy summit to solve America's dependence on foreign oil.
From the April 26 edition of Fox News' The Big Story with John Gibson:
GIBSON: Yesterday, the president unveiled his plan to lower gas prices. Today, it was the Democrats' turn, and their plan includes a windfall-profits tax on oil companies. While that talk may help politically, it did nothing to bring down gas prices. The average price for a gallon of unleaded increased to $2.92. We begin our "Big Story" coverage with congressional correspondent Brian Wilson live in Washington. Hi, Brian.
GIBSON: All right. Congressional correspondent Brian Wilson in Washington. Brian, thanks very much. Yesterday, well, joining us now, just joining us now is Congressman [sic] Sam Brownback, a Republican from Kansas. Senator, yesterday, I asked a Democrat, Nita Lowey, what's the Democrats' plan, and I never heard an actual Democrat plan, all I heard was criticism of President Bush. Have you seen anything now that has been trotted out by the Democrats that amounts to an alternative plan for this oil problem that's different than what the president is suggesting?
BROWNBACK: Well, I haven't, but I don't think that's really the point at this point in time. What we've got to do is do something. We passed an energy bill last year, but it's going to be several years I think before it's going to have much implementation. We need to get more supply, and we need to have more conservation, less demand taking place.
GIBSON: Senator, the president's been criticized by some in his own party for pulling a Schumer, referring to Senator Chuck Schumer, for ordering an investigation to see if there's been any manipulation of the gasoline price out in the market. Was he pulling a Schumer, or was that a wise political thing to do?