May 4th, 2008
12:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Clinton: I'm not listening to economists on gas tax holiday

 Clinton  continues to push for a gas tax holiday.

Clinton continues to push for a gas tax holiday.

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (CNN) - In the face of criticism from a slate of economists who say her gas tax holiday plan would be ineffective or even harmful, Hillary Clinton said she wasn’t taking stock of their opinions and emphasized that this was a short-term fix that would primarily benefit long-distance drivers.

“I’m not going to put my lot in with economists,” Clinton told George Stephanopolous on ABC’s ‘This Week’ after he asked her to name a single economist supporting her plan. “If we actually did it right, if we had a president who used all the tools of the presidency, we would design it in such a way that it would be implemented effectively.”

Clinton said she didn’t understand the resistance her plan is getting since its intention is to provide relief.

“On so many of these issues where costs have gone up, where people are really feeling squeezed, there just doesn’t seem to be an understanding about what people go through,” Clinton told Stephanopolous.

The debate over Clinton and McCain’s different pieces of legislation to remove the gas tax this summer reached a fever pitch this week with Barack Obama leading the charge to reject it, saying Saturday, “This is what passes for leadership in Washington – phony ideas, calculated to win elections instead of actually solving problems.”

“It’s a misnomer to say this is all that I’m doing,” Clinton defended herself, “I have a comprehensive long-term energy plan that would go right at dependence on foreign oil.”

Clinton has been arguing that it’s not only about the money saved but the message it sends. “I really believe we’ve got to start right now, demonstrating a willingness to take on these oil companies,” she argued to Stephanopolous.

– CNN Political Producer Alexander Marquardt

soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. Christian, Tampa FL

    This is soooo stupid. Saving a half a tank of gas over the summer is meaningless, and could endanger thousands of infrastructure jobs. Plus, the gas companies might just raise the prices anyway. It's a dumb bit of pandering that makes one question Mrs. Clinton's economic credentials.

    May 4, 2008 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  2. CR

    Clinton is starting to scare me... the longer this campaign goes on the more she starts to sound like George Bush. Ignoring the advice of experts and being stubbornly locked into a position is so much like Bush it is frightening.

    May 4, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  3. John Smith, Alabama

    Does she ever listen to any experts???


    GOBAMA 08

    May 4, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  4. Kent D

    To amend my previous comment: I see she has introduced a bill. Of course it has no support from the Democratic leadership because they have listened to the economists and common sense that any increase in demand is going to result in an increase in cost.

    Can we just end the primaries now and hand the presidency to McCain? Thanks for nothing, Hillary.

    May 4, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  5. v.ananthan

    Economists alone can^t bring up the economy...

    It^s up to the eligible and strong politicians like Hillary Clinton who can create an environment which will bring the investors back and there will be more jobs and the economy will start getting better..



    May 4, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  6. Leonard Bradley

    Obama filled Senate bill 2433 requiring the government to provide the UN with .7% of the united states gross national product that is $845,000,000.000 for the UN to use as it sees fit. That is correct the figure is in the hundred billion dollars. Boy are we going to get a big increase.

    May 4, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  7. GCG - Austin, TX

    Right, "Don't bother me with the FACTS, I want to continue to pander to the voting public."

    That's what we want in a President?

    May 4, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  8. case

    Clinton is clearly taking the "anti-intellectual" stance in this issue. We have had a President how boost of not listening to expert opinion... Can we say IRAQ for 5 years. Clinton may lose more of the College educated crowd over this. Econ 101 supply and demand.. Lower taxes does not equal lower prices. If the prise of Oil rises so will gas likely overtaking the saving. (PLUS putting more money in the hands of Oil Companies)..

    If she succeeds with this argument we may be in serious trouble.. Oil companies may see her as someone who can sell a money making policy to the public much like Bush with his tax cuts to the wealthy.

    May 4, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  9. Janis

    Hillary Clinton: higher than the laws of economics. Yet again, she seems to think that somehow all 500 economists against her plan are wrong, and that it will somehow help people. In reality, you are HURTING people Hillary - except the oil companies who will profit greatly from your ignorant plan. What is so difficult to understand?

    May 4, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  10. Nancy White

    Hillary is defensive because she knows she is wrong. She is just a part of the old politics. We need a new person that has experience named Obama.

    May 4, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  11. chrisu

    I bet Ms. Clinton wishes she never supported this silly idea in the first place. Can't flip-flop now!

    May 4, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  12. Mary Wa

    No suprise-Bush didn't listen to them either. That got us ,where?

    May 4, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. John

    Are you serious? Oh, how high the price of independence!! Sadly we all pay for it. Sounds like our parents of old, Adam and Eve who chose independence, and we thus are paying the price of their decision. Here too, Clinton, chooses independent thinking instead of listening to the counsel of those who know something about the impact of this decision. In summary, Clinton's actions well sum up what the Clinton legacy is all about: free sex in the White House, pardons for whomever they please, money deals with no legal ramifications, and now writing the "law" books as they please. Is this really possibly? Absolutely not, their time will come!

    May 4, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  14. Z Swim

    "I'm not going to put my lot in with Economists"

    Because mere facts shouldn't be enough to stop a plan.

    Unless I miss my guess, isn't a plan like this going to DIRECTLY AFFECT THE ECONOMY! Isn't that the realm of the economists?

    Ach! Clinton is sounding more like Bush and McCain every day.

    Ignore what those naysayers are saying about the future, this will feel good NOW!

    Obama is the only one of the three who is Ethical enough to be president.

    May 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  15. Debbie

    THis COW doesn't listen to anyone and she will not listen to you(her supporters).

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  16. sheep

    Of course your not thats whats wrong with you ..You dont listen to any one and wont if you were president ..People have exp. in subjects your not would be worth listening to ,,but youd nuke IRAN ...and your comment that is ellitost to all women who think staying home baking cookies is important..and you continue to say it . Why is that remark any differant then something once said ,,about OBAMAS REMARK ...FAIR AND BALANCED NO WAY

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. dorothy

    We do not want short term solutions to long term PROBLEMS we want some one to work for us.
    $30 for the summer is not a solution. and there is no garantee George Bush will go for it.
    How is she going to get it? McCain Suggested it but even he cannot garantee it.

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. Paul

    This just proves how comical the Clinton campaign has become. She's completely lost the plot and cuts a sad figure of desperation with dumb policies that a high school student could see through. Please, please, please, people of Indiana, put her out of her misery.

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  19. Tim in Arkansas

    Economists aren't the only ones that Hillary doesn't listen too. Face it, Hillary only listens to Hillary!

    In her mind, she did get Bosnian Sniper Fire! In her mind, she is Goldilocks! In her mind, she is Annie Oakley. In her mind, she is the next president. HILLARY IS OUT OF HER MIND!!!!

    Obama 08! Obama 08! Obama 08! Obama 08!
    Obama 08! Obama 08! Obama 08! Obama 08!

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  20. Sue

    Sounds like Bush to me!

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  21. jAYjAY

    Hillary travels with generals supporting foreign policy. But soes not listen to one economist, who is advising her on the economy? That's like voting for the war without reading the intelligence report.

    May 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  22. Matt

    Sounds very Bush-esque: "I'm not going to listen to people who know what they're talking about, I'm gonna go with my gut."

    Nice, Hillary. Real nice. I look forward to the day your political parlor tricks are over.

    May 4, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  23. Donald from SC

    Well it seem to me that she is saying, "To H*ll with the folks who actually know and understand how the economy works, I know better because I am a lawyer." A true leader also understands how to follow!

    May 4, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  24. paul

    Sen. Clinton and McCain, as well as President Bush didn't "place their lot" with what military and foreign policy analysts (as well as common sense) said before invading Iraq in 2002, so why should Clinton and McCain listen to economists (and common sense) before repealing the Federal gasoline tax?

    If it feels good, do it. That's what "leadership" means for this trio of fakers.

    May 4, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  25. Riverking

    the answers that Mrs.Clinton has proposed arnt the answers to the real questions that need adressing...this gas price crunch that we are all dealing with, needs to be adressed at the core of the issue....we need a cheaper alturnitive then oil...we need to invest into the future. i think that these high prices is good for us in the long term, it will hopefully prod us in the rear to do something different. we have the know how we need the ambition.

    May 4, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
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