Press Release of U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer

For Immediate Release:
October 27, 2005  
Washington D.C. Office (202) 224-3553

Statement of Senator Barbara Boxer Regarding Skyrocketing Oil Company Profits  

The facts are clear: Oil companies are making massive profits. For the third quarter ExxonMobil profits were up 75%. Shell’s were up 68%. ConocoPhilips’ were up 89%.

Gasoline in California and across the country is almost $3 per gallon – this week the price is up 43 cents per gallon more than a year ago. And the outlook is equally bleak. Heating costs could rise 50% or more this winter.

Our families are hurting. Businesses are being squeezed. And the economy is in real trouble.

In response to this, what are the Republicans doing? No investigations on price gouging, no attempt to correct these windfall profits, no relief for the consumer.

Instead, the Republicans are trying to pass bills that are giveaways to the oil industry.

Yesterday, in the Environment and Public Works Committee, we defeated the GasPRICE Act. This bill essentially offered bribes to the oil industry – it was a giveaway to companies that don’t need the help.

We can do better. We Democrats have a plan:

  • Pass the Cantwell Bill that would increase the FTC’s authority to investigate gasoline price gouging.
  • Pass my bill that calls for an automatic investigation by the FTC whenever there is a dramatic, sustained increase in gasoline prices.
  • Pass the Dorgan bill that stops oil companies from receiving windfall profits.
  • Ensure the FTC aggressively investigates gas market manipulation as required by the Dorgan-Stabenow provision in the energy bill which recently became law.
  • Support investment in energy efficient cars such as hybrids and alternative fuels.