Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said Wednesday on “America’s Newsroom” that Democrats “want” inflation and high gas prices to cause the public to transition to electric vehicles.
Gas prices soared Tuesday to a record-high of $4.523 per gallon for regular, while diesel and premium continued to exceed $5 per gallon after inflation skyrocketed 8.3% in April. Rubio told Fox News host Bill Hemmer that President Joe Biden’s administration has worsened soaring prices, arguing they are not taking steps to increase domestic oil production.
“This has to do with the fact that we have far-left extremists inside of that White House who are sympathizers not just to the Cuban regime, but the one in Nicaragua, the one in Venezuela, obviously they sympathize with these people,” the senator said. “They hated the sanctions and they just thought oil was a good excuse so they could get people to support them on. But this is nothing to do with oil because Venezuela can’t provide us oil. The oil that we need, we have, it’s in America. They need to allow us to explore it, and they’re not.”
“They’re telling banks not to fund these projects, they’re canceling leases, they’re waging war on fossil fuels, they’re waging war on oil and natural gas and it’s one of the reasons supply is not as high as it needs to be.”
The senator then suggested gas prices will not change because members of the Democratic Party “want” gas prices to rise. (RELATED: ‘Happy Being A Customer To Chinese Concentration Camps’: Sen. Ted Cruz Rips Calls To Buy Electric Vehicles)
“I think there are people in their party that actually like it,” he continued. “They’re not gonna say it because they don’t want to get crushed in the next election although I believe they will be. But they like the fact that there’s inflation and high prices. They believe the more expensive oil and gas gets, the more people are gonna buy electric cars. Well, not everyone can afford an electric car right now, we don’t have enough electric cars, and the batteries for those electric cars are made in China. Look, these guys, they want this.”
“I’ve had people tell me to my face ‘well, that’s why we need more mass transit, everyone should be riding a bus and getting rid of their cars.’ I think there are elements on the left, a lot of elements on the far-left that will never admit it, but they like the fact that oil and natural gas is expensive,” he said.
Amid the rise in gas prices, the Biden administration has pushed for Americans to purchase electric vehicles in order to eliminate their dependence on gas. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg proposed the idea of making the transition at the “Accelerating Clean Transportation” event in early March.
“Last month, we announced a $5 billion investment to build a nationwide electric vehicle charging network for the people from rural to suburban to urban communities can all benefit from the gas savings of driving an EV,” Buttigieg said.
The White House also urged the public to purchase electric cars in a March 10 tweet thread with calls for a “clean energy future.”
“But in the long term we must speed up — not slow down — our transition to a clean energy future,” the White House tweeted. “The President has proposed credits to make EVs more affordable and weatherize homes and businesses that will cut energy costs and save American families an average of $500 a year. When we have electric cars powered by clean energy, we will never have to worry about gas prices again. And autocrats like Putin won’t be able to use fossil fuels as weapons against other nations.”
When we have electric cars powered by clean energy, we will never have to worry about gas prices again. And autocrats like Putin won’t be able to use fossil fuels as weapons against other nations.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) March 10, 2022
Electric grids are still powered by fossil-fuels, particularly coal and oil, in order to charge, according to CNBC. A study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology found that the battery and fuel production when making an EV creates higher emissions than manufacturing a gas-powered vehicle. Over the car’s lifetime, total greenhouse gas emissions with manufacturing, driving and charging an EV are significantly lower than a gas-fueled vehicle.
Though upfront costs of electric cars are more expensive, ownership becomes cheaper in the long run, according to Money.com. Owners who drive 15,000 miles in their electric car spend roughly $546 on power, while a person would spend $1,255 in a gas-powered car driving the same distance.