KOKOMO, Indiana (CNN) – Hillary Clinton is defending her proposal to eliminate the gas tax this summer, as rival Barack Obama and some economists continued to criticize it as a gimmick to appeal to voters that won’t actually impact their wallets.
“You’re going to hear from my opponent, and you’re going to hear from columnists and you’re going to hear from talking heads about how there’s nothing we can do about these gas prices except to have a long-term plan,” Clinton told supporters at an Indiana rally Wednesday night.
[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/22/art.clinton.pa.jpg caption="Clinton and McCain are calling for a summer gas tax holiday."] “Well of course we need a long-term plan,” said the New York senator. “But I’m not going to sit idly by and see people go out of business who are independent truckers not able to continue to choose between food and gas because they can’t afford either. I’m not going to sit idly by.”
To illustrate her point, Clinton rode to work with a steelworker from South Bend, Indiana, Wednesday morning in a pickup truck. In a staged photo-op, they stopped for gas and paid over $60 for just under three-quarters of a tank.
Clinton has said hers is a short-term solution that would mostly benefit truckers and drivers with long commutes. She plans to introduce legislation in the Senate in the near future.