Rising gas prices decrease holiday travel; Obama pushes renewable energy
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says one answer to high gasoline prices is to spend money developing renewable energy sources.
"That's the key to helping families at the pump and reducing our dependence on foreign oil" in the long term, he said Saturday in his weekly radio and Internet address.
Obama raises the issue of rising fuel prices during almost every public appearance and says that he understands the strain higher fuel costs are putting on some family budgets.
He announced Thursday during an event in Reno, Nev., that the Justice Department will begin looking for cases of fraud or manipulation in the oil markets, even though Attorney General Eric Holder suggested a variety of legal reasons may be behind the surging gas prices.
As he has before, Obama said Saturday there is no "silver bullet" that will slash gas prices immediately. But he said there are things government can do to help make a difference in the long term.
They also include boosting U.S. oil production, rooting out any illegal activity by traders and speculators and ending $4 billion in annual taxpayer subsidies to oil and gas companies.
"Instead of subsidizing yesterday's energy sources, we need to invest in tomorrow's," Obama said.
In the weekly Republican address, Nebraska Sen. Mike Johanns focused on jobs and said lawmakers who are serious about creating them need to cut spending and the bureaucracy that he and others say burden small businesses and keep them from hiring more.
"If everyone is serious about job creation, in addition to reducing the debt, let's reduce burdensome regulations that serve no purpose other than to insert more government into the lives of citizens," he said. "We can't tie up small businesses in needless red tape and regulations and expect them to create jobs and boost the economy."
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