(CNSNews.com) - White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Tuesday defended President Joe Biden blaming high gas prices on gas station owners, saying that their profits have gone up 40 cents, while wholesale oil prices have gone down 15 percent and retail gas prices have only dropped about three percent over the same time period.
She was responding to a question about Biden calling on gas station owners to lower gas prices.
“My message to the companies running gas stations and setting prices at the pump is simple: this is a time of war and global peril. Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product. And do it now,” the president tweeted on Saturday.
Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos’ criticized Biden for the tweet, saying that the president’s statement was “either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics.”
“Ouch. Inflation is far too important a problem for the White House to keep making statements like this. It’s either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics,” Bezos tweeted on Saturday.
“How did the president go from blaming high gas prices on Putin to big oil to small business owners now?” Fox News White House Correspondent Peter Doocy asked.
“Here’s the thing about that, Peter. When you look at as of this morning, when you look at the crude oil, and when you look at wholesale oil prices as well, they’ve declined about 15 percent, and so retail gas prices however have only declined just about three percent over the same time period as we have seen with crude oil prices and the wholesale gas prices,” the press secretary said.
“And meanwhile, those same retailers are profiting— their profit have gone up about 40 cents, nearly 40 cents in that same period of time, so what the president is saying is that everyone along that chain, along that production chain line needs to– needs to make sure that they’re doing what is possible - their part in bringing down the costs for the American people,” she said.
“That is what we’re asking. Consumers should not be the first to pay and the last to benefit,” Jean-Pierre said.
Doocy asked the press secretary about Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos’ tweet calling out President Biden for asking gas station owners to lower gas prices.
“Jeff Bezos says the president’s tweet about this is ‘either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics.’ Which is it?” Doocy asked.
“As you know, we completely disagree with Jeff Bezos. Look, we will continue to call on everyone along that distribution chain as I just mentioned, from oil companies to refineries to retailers to pass their lower costs through to consumers. That is what is important: to make sure that we should not make, again, consumers pay first and get that re- — and get that relief last,” Jean-Pierre said.