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Ross Perot on Energy & Oil

1992 & 1996 Reform Party Nominee for President


Supported 50-cent gas tax to pay off deficit

Perotís ideas [in the 1992 campaign] were often innovative-including the politically unpopular position of imposing a fifty-cent-a-gallon gasoline tax increase to help pay off the deficit.
Source: Citizen Perot, by Gerald Posner, p.257 , Jul 2, 1996

Raise gas taxes 10 cents a year for 5 years

Q: As part of your plan to reduce the ballooning Federal deficit, you've suggested that we raise gasoline taxes 50 cents a gallon. Why punish the middle-class consumer to such a degree?

PEROT: It's 10 cents a year, cumulative. It finally gets to 50 cents at the end of the fifth year. I think "punish" is the wrong word. I didn't create this problem; we're trying to solve it. Some of our international competitors collect up to $3.50 a gallon in taxes. And they use that money to build infrastructure and create jobs. We collect 35 cents, and we don't have it to spend. I know it's not popular. But the people who will be helped the most by it are the working people who will get the jobs created because of this tax. Why do we have to do it? Because we have so mismanaged our country over the years, and it is now time to pay the fiddler.

BUSH: The question was on fairness. I just disagree. I don't believe it is fair to slap a 50-cent-a-gallon tax. I don't think we need to do it.

Source: The First Clinton-Bush-Perot Presidential Debate , Oct 11, 1992

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Page last updated: Mar 14, 2014