ICYMI: Democrats Call Out Big Oil for Profiteering at Americans’ Expense

Majority Leader Schumer Announces He’ll Call on DOJ to Investigate Industry Collusion and Price-Fixing

Washington, D.C. –  At a press conference today ahead of Memorial Day Weekend, leading congressional Democrats called out Big Oil and their elected GOP political allies for profiteering at the expense of American families. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced he will formally ask the Justice Department “to investigate and prosecute collusion and price-fixing that may have increased gas, fuel, and energy costs.” Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse discussed a new joint Senate Budget and Finance Committee probe into oil executives’ response to Trump’s $1 billion solicitation.

View a full video of today’s event here.

“Big Oil companies are basking in record-breaking profits, while hardworking Americans are feeling the pinch of high prices at the pump. The federal government must use every tool at our disposal to investigate the oil industry, to hold accountable any liable actors, and to end any illegal activities. Big Oil has proven that above all else they are beholden to profits – even if the high gas prices hurt American families. We cannot let this greed and pollution continue unfettered, and Democrats stand ready to protect workers, not the ultra-wealthy Big Oil executives and shareholders.” – Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY)

“We need to end our addiction to fossil fuels and break up Big Oil once and for all. These crooks need consequences, not an endless supply of our hard-earned cash. As fossil fuel companies buy each other up in an attempt to consolidate their price-fixing power, instead of Big Oil, we should be calling them Even Bigger Oil – because we are literally paying an even bigger price for their dirty practices throughout our economy.” – Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA)

“Donald Trump has a private meeting with Big Oil execs. And he says to them in that private meeting, give me $1 billion—quid—and I will give you—quo—all the fossil fuel-helping rollbacks that we can provide. At the same time, Big Oil folks are writing his executive orders for him for a possible future Trump Administration. There is a real stink of corruption, and with respect to this episode, it hits the quid pro quo barrier. So, Chairman Wyden and the Finance Committee and I have written to all of the companies present at that meeting, demanding answers, information, and documents about what took place, about what led up to it, and about the context for that quid pro quo corrupt offer.  We have got to reel in the corruption of Big Oil. This quid pro quo offer gives us a hell of a good reason to pursue it.” – Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Senate Budget Committee Chair

“As Congressional Democrats work to cut costs across the board – including lowering prices at the gas pump – Republicans are putting people over polluters by advancing extreme bills that do the exact opposite. I am proud to join leaders from across the Congress in standing up for the American people, and to call for action that will safeguard the future of our environment for generations to come.” – House Assistant Democratic Leader Joe Neguse (D-CO-02)

“Big Oil puts profits over people. They rip off consumers, collude with OPEC, and conspire with Trump to reduce protections and increase pollution. All at the expense of our pocketbooks, our health, and our climate. Democrats will continue to put the health and economic well-being of people over politics. We will hold Big Oil accountable for their corruption, and fight for a just transition to clean energy, so Americans do not have to choose between food and fuel.” – Rep. Nanette Barragán (D-CA-44)

“Republicans have continuously worked to undermine President Biden’s efforts to hold Big Oil accountable for polluting our air, hurting our communities, and stealing billions from our constituents. And, at every opportunity, they have put polluters over people to give their Big Oil friends more subsidies and handouts. We cannot continue to tie our future to the dirty energy of the past. I’ll continue fighting alongside House Democrats to ensure our communities are free from hazardous pollution, to demand fair prices at the pump, and to return power to the people.” – Rep. Sydney Kamlager-Dove (D-CA-37), Vice Ranking Member of the House Natural Resources Committee

“This month, we learned Trump promised Big Oil CEOs that he would enact their agenda, steamrolling clean energy progress and all restraints on their profiteering while asking them to direct $1B to his campaign… Big Oil-backed advocacy groups, think tanks, and climate deniers have prepared an executive agenda that will pad Big Oil’s profits at the expense of everyone else. Meanwhile, President Biden and Democratic members of Congress are holding price gougers accountable and fighting to lower costs for American families.” – Lori Lodes, Climate Power Executive Director

“The tireless climate leadership of Congressional Democrats and President Biden could not contrast more strongly with the appalling behavior of MAGA Congressional Republicans and Donald Trump who cater to Big Oil at every step – even as Big Oil schemes with OPEC to keep oil prices high to pad their already enormous profits. This is beyond disgraceful, and LCV is all in to hold Big Oil accountable and make polluters pay. Our health, our climate, our wallets, and our economy depend on it.  – Tiernan Sittenfeld, League of Conservation Voters Senior Vice President for Government Affairs

While Donald Trump is being investigated for promising Big Oil CEOs $110 billion in tax breaks, free reign to pollute and profiteer, and a war on American-made clean energy, President Biden is standing up to price gougers and fighting for families. Biden’s historic clean energy plan – which has already driven forward over 500 new projects and 270,000 jobs across the country, while requiring oil giants to begin paying their fair share – will expand Americans’ access to more affordable, reliable, and secure energy choices.