Chu-Obama Conflict On Gas Taxes?

Nobel laureate and Energy Secretary designee Steven Chu is apparently at odds with the president-elect's position on fuel prices in terms of the price signal it sends to motorists and home-buyers.

"Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe," Steven Chu, the director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, told the Wall Street Journal in September. (The newspaper did not publish the gas tax comments until last week, shortly after the Nobel-prize winning physicist had been identified as Obama's nominee for Energy secretary.)

Chu said he favors gradually ramping up gasoline taxes over 15 years to nudge consumers into buying cars that are more fuel efficient and homes which are closer to work.

Raising the federal gasoline tax, however, has been dismissed by Obama.

The president-elect acknowledges that gas prices have come down since the summer when they reached $4 per gallon. He worries, however, that the overall economic downturn makes American families ill-equipped to shoulder higher prices.

'Putting additional burdens on American families right now, I think, is a mistake,' Obama told NBC's 'Meet the Press' in an interview which aired on Dec. 7."

Thanks to Gladwyn deSouza?

Full Story: Obama Energy Pick Backs Higher Gas Tax

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