With rapidly rising gas prices, three House Democrats in blue states have introduced a bill to give monthly $100 stimulus checks to individuals for the rest of the year in any month where the national average of gas is over $4 per gallon.
The Gas Rebate Act of 2022 was introduced Thursday by Reps. Mike Thompson, D-Calif.; John Larson, D-Conn.; and Lauren Underwood, D-Ill., to address high gas prices with an energy rebate of $100 per month — and $100 for each dependent — a structure used for past COVID-19 impact payments.
Similarly, individuals earning below $75,000 a year would receive $100 for every month gas is over $4, while married tax filers making under $150,000 would get $200.
Thompson adopted the White House talking point — oft-rebuked by Republicans — which blamed inflated gas prices on Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine, calling it the "Putin price hike." Republicans frequently note gas prices had been rising for months under inflationary and supply-chain issues since President Joe Biden took office.
"Americans are feeling the impact at the pump of Vladimir Putin's illegal invasion of Ukraine, and right now we must work together on commonsense policy solutions to ease the financial burden that my constituents are feeling," Thompson wrote in a statement. "The Putin Price Hike is putting strain on our economy, and I am proud to be working with Reps. Larson and Underwood to introduce this legislation to provide middle-class Americans with monthly payments to ease the financial burden of this global crises."
The bill proposal came as the White House had been reluctant to add more stimulus payouts amid rising inflation in a midterm election year.
"There's a variety of ideas being discussed to ensure that the costs American families are feeling at the pump are as minimal as possible," White House spokesperson Vedant Patel told Axios.
"However, gas cards being sent to the American people is not seriously under consideration. It is not an administratively feasible solution and the Biden administration is not considering this as a serious option to help American families."
Blue states have the highest gas prices in American, including California and Illinois, according to AAA.
Alaska, a large oil-producing state, is the only state won by former President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election that is marked red on the AAA gas prices map ($4.367-$5.855).
California, Illinois, New York, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, and Hawaii are all marked red. Connecticut, Larson's state, is close to New York City, but its gas prices are just moderately higher than the rest of the country ($4.193-$4.366), according to AAA.
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