HUDSON: Democrats responsible for high prices

“Higher energy prices act like a tax.”

Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury John W. Snow was exactly right when it comes to the burden high energy prices have on American families. Unfortunately, this tax is one that Democrats in Washington seem more than willing to pass on to you and your family.

Gas prices have continued to soar because of President Joe Biden and Washington Democrats’ ongoing war on American energy. Last week, the national average price for gas hit a new record 10 days in a row. For the first time ever, the price of gas is now above $4 per gallon in every state. At the QuikTrip by Concord Mills, a gallon was $4.40. Despite these devastating milestones, Biden and Washington Democrats refuse to do what is necessary to combat this crisis.

Earlier this month, the Biden administration cancelled three major oil leases in Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico. Rather than unleashing American energy, Biden has instead chosen to deplete our strategic oil reserves, which are now at their lowest level since 1987. Even worse, last week the Administration announced plans to ease sanctions on Venezuela to increase the Maduro dictatorship’s ability to produce and sell oil globally. President Biden seems more focused on lining the pockets of dictators than creating jobs here in America.

In Congress, Washington Democrats have labeled price gouging as the latest scapegoat for high prices – even though Biden’s own Energy Secretary has said price gouging is not to blame. Rather than boost America’s supply of fuel, last week they pushed a vote to force price controls. The U.S. tried to curb high gas prices and inflation through price controls in the 1970s. It led to shortages, rationing, mile-long gas lines, and a dangerous reliance on foreign countries for oil through OPEC. We cannot repeat the same mistakes.

These actions are not the solution to this crisis. Instead, we need to unleash American energy, in every form, to its fullest extent. This starts by passing legislation like my American Energy Independence from Russia Act which Democrats blocked last week for a sixth time. However, Washington Democrats must reverse their agenda and make real efforts to increase our domestic energy production, end our dependence on foreign oil, create jobs here in America, and lower fuel costs for you and your family.

Like gas prices, the Biden Border Crisis also set a record last week: 234,088 illegal migrants encountered in April, the highest monthly total in history. This is the fourth time since Biden took office that monthly illegal encounters have passed 200,000 and brings the total number during his tenure to over 2.6 million. With Title 42 border protections set to end this week, this trend will only get worse.

Last month, 113,248 illegal migrants were blocked from entering the country mainly because of Title 42. If this measure is left to expire, the number of illegal migrations is predicted to skyrocket, overwhelming border agents and increasing the already severe security threats facing this nation, like illicit drug trafficking of fentanyl. 

So far, Customs and Border Patrol has seized 340,000 pounds of drugs this year, including 5,300 pounds of fentanyl. That is enough to kill 2.4 billion people! Preventing the flow of illegal drugs into our country and community begins by securing our border, finishing the border wall, increasing funding to border patrol, and maintaining Title 42. 

I am focused on solutions to end record-setting inflation, gas prices, and illegal border crossings. Last week I also continued my work to improve the health of our community. 

Last Tuesday, I spoke with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan and urged his agency to do more to combat water contamination in our community. Additionally, I was proud to have four of my bills aimed at improving health care quality, access, and transparency advance in Congress. This includes my veteran’s health care bill the Patient Advocate Tracker Act, which passed the House of Representatives and is now on its way to the Senate. These common sense, bipartisan bills build on my work as a leader in House Republicans’ Healthy Future Task Force and will go a long way in helping to improve the health and wellbeing of our community.

From gas prices to border security to healthcare, I remain focused on improving the lives of you and your families. Our nation is facing a lot of challenges, but I will never stop working for you.  

Richard Hudson is serving his fifth term representing North Carolina’s 8th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He currently serves on the Energy and Commerce Committee and in House leadership as the Republican Conference Secretary.

By U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson

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