President Joe Biden's trip to Saudi Arabia to seek more oil production is a "slap in the face" to the American people when the United States has the capacity for energy independence, Rep. Ashley Hinson said on Newsmax on Thursday.
"This is a national security issue for our country, and we have those tools here at home," the Iowa Republican said on Newsmax's "Wake Up America." "They have good-paying jobs for American workers, so that's why I don't understand why the president continues to dip into our strategic reserve."
Americans are paying an average of 78% more for gas this year than they did last year, and that eats into a family's budget, said Hinson.
"They're spending all that extra money on fuel, and in a state like mine where most of our communities are rural, people are driving 20-30 miles to go to work," said Hinson. "That expendable income is being pinched right now, so I think it sends it absolutely the wrong message … going to our adversaries for foreign oil isn't the answer. We should be unleashing domestic production today."
The nation's inflation rate is at 9.1%, the highest it's been in decades, but the Biden administration's solution is to talk about spending more money rather than curbing the situation, Hinson said.
"This is just about passing the buck and continuing the blame game," she said. "You talk about an out-of-touch administration, this is exactly it."
Republicans are continuing to offer solutions to the challenges facing the economy, including domestic energy production, she said, noting that unleashing energy production and lowering the prices at the pump is "one of the quickest ways to help tackle what we're seeing with inflation."
Biden's solution is "to dip into our strategic reserves and send those barrels to China," said Hinson. "Transportation costs for goods and services are through the roof … it's driving all of those costs up, and they're getting passed on directly to the people who have to try to fill their grocery carts on a limited budget."
When asked if she thinks the nation is already in a recession, Hinson replied that "we're clearly seeing that pullback with our economy."
"Everywhere I go in our district, our small business owners are raising that red flag for me," said Hinson. "They're saying the first thing to go [is] the Main Street business that sells maybe candles and gifts."
And, she added, the agenda of Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is responsible for the economic downfall.
Hinson also said Thursday the growing prices are leaving her constituents facing difficult questions about how to make ends meet.
"People continue to send us their pictures of their energy bills," said Hinson. "We're hearing about possible blackouts for energy, safety, and security in our communities. People want to be able to rely on their energy and that their lights are going to stay on."
But more spending is not the answer, she said.
"We're hearing these latest proposals for reconciliation," said Hinson. "We're hearing these latest proposals for reconciliation that would raise taxes on our small business owners."
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