tv Washington Journal CSPAN January 4, 2015 9:30am-10:01am EST
comfortable where the price is now, comfortable with market share and everything getting cut and a half in the meantime. it's pretty amazing. there are current trees. i mean the thing is it cost saudi arabia maybe a couple of dollars a barrel to actually extract this oil from the earth. it costs these other economies, i think, a break-even price to their budget along the order of $8,090,100,100 plus a barrel of oil and they can't balance their books unless oil prices are that high sustainabley. this is a problem the world over when you are convinced and you have your advisors out there telling you that we are not going to see the end of triple digit oil against and that was plausible if you think back to 2008 when oil hit $140 a barrel and there were all of these cries of drill drill, drill in the united states. oil is suddenly $55 a barrel and is that a flash in the pan, or is this telegraphing that oil prices can fall even further? there isn't any precedent for
all of the stuff that we are extracting in the united states and to what extent we can use it to break opec's back. there is a great argument however, and i have seen it actually argued on both sides of the aisle that this is an opportune time to kick in a gas tax where at least you would, as the united states and the taxpayer taxpayer, you would capture a big part of the windfall when and if gas prices go up again. it's not just a net loss going to the opec members. but there is no desire right now to do that in washington. i mean people are riding this because you are seeing it all over facebook and twitter. people are pumping for a dollar 80 a gallon in some parts. and it's something that you are very reluctant to take that bone away from people if you are a lawmaker host: robin farzad heard on the radio, again, a reminder to our listeners and viewers where they can hear you. host: guest: sound cloud and go to
wuir public radio, every wednesday from 4:00 to 5:00 host: thank you for stopping by. guest: my pleasure. host: we want to focus on gas prices in our next segment and whether or not you think lawmakers should raise the gas taxes for roads and bridges around the country. we are dividing our phone lines in a simple way. if you say yacht question university: if you say no: how would you answer the question? guest: if gas falls to $0.99 a gallon people remember $4 a gallon. maybe 25 sent tax isn't going to kill us. who knows? host: we will take a short break and get to your calls and comments. tell us whether you think gas taxes should be raised to fix america's roads and bridges. you are watching c-span's "washington journal just o this day 20 years ago, "washington
journal" first went on the air. we are back in a moment. ♪ tonight, on q & a janet murgia president and ceo of the nation's largest civil rights and advocacy group on the state of hispanics in america. immigration reform and her come compelling personal story. >> i had the great privilege of experiencing the american dream here in this country, born in kansas, you know my parents actually came to this country fromin the very early '50s, very early '50 did. my parents came from mexico with no money and very little education. i think my dad had an 8th grade education; my mom, a 5th grade education. and yet they believed in the prompts of this country, and they were seeking better opportunities for their children. so they worked really hard and
sacrificed as so many latinos and hispanics have done in this country because they wanted that better future for their children in the promise of this country. they employed important values that have been our guide for me and my six brothers and sisters. they taught us the importance of family, of faith of community, hard work, sacrifice, honesty, integrity. all of those were important values that they shared with us. >> tonight at 8:00 eastern and pacific on c-span's "q & a." ""washington journal" continues. host: as robin farzad indicated, gas prices at a record low level. should gas taxes be raised in order to improve roads and bridges around the country?
here in the washington, d.c. area, gas taxes are going up in virginia and in maryland. here is a map around the country from the american petroleum institute institute. most of the country with gas taxes, the federal and state taxes below $0.50. you can see it's above 50 sentence in states like new york and pins. west virginia, kentucky illinois, indiana, calf california, nevada and florida. the question is whether or not you think gas taxes should be raised to pay for roads and bridges. nationwide, the federal excise taxes on gasoline is 18.4 cents. it has been that way since 1993. the federal diesel tax is just over $0.24. now, if indexed for inflation, the gas tax should be right now closer to $0.29 a gallon and for the diesel tax, about $0.30 a gallon. again, that's just the federal tax. state taxes are gone up in a number of statements. we want to ask you whether or not you think the federal tax should be increased to fix
america's roads and bridges. now gas prices are at record low levels. tim is joining us. you say yes. why? caller: yes of course they should. they should be raised but at the same time, they should invest that money they get not only into bridges and roads but into the alternative energy because, you know, we are using too much oil, and i know a lot of people don't believe in global warming and i question it, myself. but i can't take the chance you know. i can't see my kids living in a world where the weather is just heywire. and things at the point, you know, we let them get at the point where we can't reverse it. this is something we don't know about. we should be going full-steam ahead in to not using this energy right here. to keep prices really down, all they need to do is nationalize the oil here in the u.s. and sell it to the customers for what are it costs to come out of
the ground. >> would be less than a dollar a gallon. at the same time, you put a surcharge on that to move toward alternative energy and, you know, that's the only way i see this working. host: thank you for the call. npr has a story about rick snyder of michigan re-elected as he prepares for his state legislative agenda. it's asking law makers democrats and republicans in michigan to raise the state gas tax to improve michigan's roads and bridges. you can read the story online at the national public radio website. next is james from belight, wisconsin. good morning. welcome to the program. caller: sir, thank you. i would say no, not raising per gallon tax but the only real try way to go about this is with a highway use tax because the problems of raising gas taxes, it penalizes poor people because traditionally poor people their
jobs are going to be fairly local and they are not going to be traveling as much for vacation and stuff. so mileage as far as what you drive in a year, that's how you are going to have to tax it. host: thanks. an editorial saying the gas tax has been fixed at $0.18 for the last two decades. now would be a great time to raise it. edwards says no to raising gas prices or the gas tax. cut the support for spending in our bloated military as well as defense budgets. joining us from florida, saying yes to racing gas taxes. good morning to you nardo. caller: good morning. host: host: good morning. caller: i think we should raise it because we have to do something. the roads are horrible. they are horrible. we just can't let bridges fall down or, you know the potholes from north to south.
i travel the roads. i am amazed at what i have seen. i am seen them in new york and miami. so, i mean what are we going to do? the republicans want to run everything. now, they have an opportunity to run everything. they say they know how to run it. host: we will have another caller from florida in port orange. you say no to raising the federal gas tax. why? call you are on the air. why do you say no? caller: because i think we are taxed enough already. putting more money in government hands is like pouring it down the drain. host: fred to alex andrea virg. you say yes to raising the gas tax. why? caller: why? because our roads are falling apart. i took a trip out to the midwest last summer and the interstates are in terrible shape. even the toll roads are bad. i don't know if the gas tax will help, but we should raise it at
least enough to put it what it was in '92 the last time it was raised for inflation and then index it so it can go up automatically so our roads will be usable again host: fred, thanks. in meridian texas, chris is on the phone. you are saying no to a gas tax increase. why, chris? caller: because we can't handle any more taxes. when you give the government that much money, all they are going to do is waste it and spend it somewhere else. and we can't. we can't afford it. we cannot afford this. when gas prices go up what happens? then we have to pay more for gas. you know the oil prices are going to go back up in about 12 to 18 months. we have already been told that. why waste the money when we don't need it? let the states deal with these issues because you go to state to state, they all deal with these road systems. we went to oregon. roads are perfect. you go to texas they are horrible. you go to kansas they are
terrible. all they want to do is toll us. these states need to sit down work with their highway departments and get these road systems figured out on their own. the government cannot pour any more money into it because, you know it's going to be wasted. that's all i have to say about it. host: chris, thanks for the call. some of you weighing in on twitter. paul says do not raise gas taxes. states will reap the benefits of more spending due to more disposable income: sales taxes. from dallas texas, tom saying yes to raising the gas tax. why? caller: well i am a republican here in dallas texas. and our state senator corona that just went out of office was probably one of the last sane republicans in the texas state senate because he pointed out that these toll roads that we are building all over the d/fw area cost three to four times more in the long-term in tolls
and paying off the people who buy the bonds than if we just simply raised the tax and built the roads with the money from taxes. and this person that was talking a little earlier about in the sense of we are taxed enough. well talk about taxes. i spend probably $100 a month on tolls here in the city of dallas on the dallas north tollway, and you really personalize people when you have to make them pay tolls to get anywhere conveniently in the state of texas. host: we are seeing moretols in a lot of major metropolitan areas including here in the washington, d.c. area, in baltimore, new york city area. as you pointed out, in the dallas area. caller: right. in fact collin county one of the major growth areas north of dallas county the county commissioners basically said we don't want to be a gated community because literally, all of the roads into collin county,
there is even a proposal to turn one of the u.s. interstate 45/highway 75 out of dallas, you know to add toll lanes to it. you can't have a gated county basically is what it comes down to. so we will save money if we raise the green tax and build the roads rather than to postpone the inevitable. host: the other factor in all of this is that cards are much more fuel efficient so you are not buying as much gasoline because your cars are running on less fuel. caller: that is correct. host: tom thanks very much for the call from dallas. caller: thank you. host: we are asking whether or not you think a federal gas tax should be increased to pay for road and bridge repair. we will get to more of your calls. john from musko. ine eye, iowa. you say no to a gas tax increase. why? caller: absolutely not because the gas companies are getting federal subsidies from 100 years
ago. back when prospecting was so costly subsidyies should be gone then we will have more money for the roads. when people talk about interstates and roads, they have to understand that there is a separation. roads are state. interstate is federal. host: thanks for the call. one mom says would the same question be asked if gas was $4 a gallon? thanks for making that point. earlier this last summer in july, the president travel to go delaware where he again made the point that more needs to be spent on fixing america's infrastructure. here is the president last july. [video clip". >> businesses will set up where they have the best bridges, fastest internet connection smartest airports, the best power grid.
first class infrastructure attracts investment and it creates first-class jobs. unfortunately, right now, our investment in transportation lags behind a lot of other countries. china is doing more. germany is doing more. they are putting money back in to building the infrastructure we need to grow over the long-term. if washington were working the way it was supposed to congress would be creating jobs right now. jobs like germany talks about, these guys with the hard hats are doing right now rebuilding bridges and roads and airports all across the country. it helps us now and it helps us with jobs tomorrow. host: the president in delaware last july. we will likely hear more as he delivers his state of the union address. it's hitting the road, travel to go detroit and later in the week to phoenix arizona and to tennessee, to focus on home onliership, jobs and higher education. some of the things that the president will the outline in his speech coming up in three
weeks. so on the question of increasing gas taxes to pay for roads and bridges, one of our viewers saying tax the rich. not the gas. and robert is next from chicopee, massachusetts. you say no. why? caller: i is a no, because the government just uses that as another slush fund to milk that money that comes in by the gas taxes for other things like here in massachusetts. they take retirements, et cetera. the problem is they should take everybody because as elizabeth warren and our dear president have said, you know, they did not, you know countries built these things. people did not create these businesses. it's the government that did it. the government did it, and everybody, you know, enjoys benefits then everybody should be taxed.
don't put it on just the people who use our roids host: thank you for the call from massachusetts. we showed this editorial from the "washington post." the gas tax has not been raised in more than two decades. now would be a good time to raise the gas taxes. but americans for tax reform have a contrary point of view saying, it's not a good idea for the economy and for american taxpayers to raise the green tax. read both of these articles online. anthony, easthampton new york. you say yes raise the gas tax. why? caller: i say raise it. yes say raise the gas tax. i want to impose a post tax. everybody has to contribute the same exact same of money for taxing the gas. the thing to do is to tax horsepower. if i drive a honda with 80 horsepower, $80 doesn't mean too much. if i drive a ferrari or a
bentley, there are so many out here in easthampton, they have 800 horsepower. let them pay $800. i think that's more equity you know. there are not that many bentleys. you have big trucks commercial trucks buses, all kinds of vehicles that are a high horsepower horsepower. we will chip in that way and chip in equity. there is no free lunch. we have to pay it, ourselves. >> that's what i am saying. host: anthony from each hampton, thanks for the call. some are saying why doesn't each individual state keep their roads and bridges in good repair? you send a dollar to washington, d.c. and get $0.40. cut them out. next is mark joining us from waterford, new york. good morning. welcome to the washington journal. caller: good morning. host: how are you today? caller: not bad. i don't believe there should be any increase in the gas taxes. we pay enough taxes as a lower
mid class person after you take my income tax my county city town sales tax, i am pretty much paying out 50% of my earned income towards taxes. tilt that's above what i should be pay paying. there should be a flat tax where every citizen pays the same amount whether you make a million dollar or a 15% flat tax and the government takes our money and wastes it on frivolous programs that aren't required or necessary for basic sustainment of civilization. i think the government is abusive of our tax money. this is just going to be another point of abuse for them. host: marble thanks for the call. energy the topic of "the new york times" sunday magazine and the wreck of the patuligf shell sent an oil rig to drill in the remote seas of the arctic. the arctic had other plans. a story in the new york sometimes sunday magazine. denise is joining us from massachusetts. good morning.
you say, yes, raise the gas taxes? caller: yes. if not now, when? the lowest gas prices going to encourage people to buy lessee efficient cars again. them we are going to wind up in the same type of situation that we were in what? 10 years ago where we had monstrous cars for no purpose on the road. like it or not, taxes for repair, for the roads and bridges, are our responsibility. and of course most of us that money is not going to go where it should. but there is more of a risk that the bridges and roads are going
to collapse. so thank you host: others saying yes, raise gas taxes. high-speed rail will not pay for itself. headlines washingtononians are waking up to the sentencing taking place on tuesday for former governor bob mcdonald leaning on friends and faith. how he is coping with an emotional rollercoaster and eager republicans setting goals as the g.o.p. prepares to take over control of the house and the senate in the 114th congress. >> story by ed 0 keith and paul kane. next, you say no don't raise gas taxes. why? caller: when gas goes back up look who will be struggling with the extra tax.
here on staten island to go over the arizona bridge. i believe it's $15 over the other bridge. everybody is struggle ling to get off of the island. now add another tax? that will criminal everything. host: okay. peter thanks for the call. one of the photographs inside the "new york times" of the recovery effort is plodded on. more than 35 bodies have so far been recovered in that airasia flight 8501. the search continues for the black box and the remains of the plane. 162 people were on board when the plane went down late last month. nick is joining us from kentucky almo kentucky. you say no to the gas tax increase. why? >> well until washington can do what they are supposed to with the taxes they already get, we shouldn't have to give them anymore. a few minutes ago, you showed
the obama speech and it just got back from vacation and now eats gone to tennessee doing all of this stuff. i am looking right behind you at the picture of the building being worked on. so there has got to be money somewhere. until befigure out where it's at and we start using it for what it needs to be used for instead of what a few elect want it to be used for, we shouldn't have to be taxed anymore. the president is en route to washington, d.c. he will be arriving shortly joining base andrews expecting to be back. back to work toll. the new congress takes office on tuesday officially with the swearing in. live coverage of the senate on c-span 2 and, of course the house here on c-span. next is rosalee from north ford connecticut. good morning caller: good morning.
thank you. i don't think the gas tax should be raised. first of all it might eventually start to be used for fixing bridges, et cetera but eventually, it might find its way into some other area of slush fund somebody referenced before. but right now it's helping poor people. they can drive to their jobs and their -- they have so much money out for gas. it helps poor people. thank you very much. host: thanks for the call. next is pat from huntington west virginia. you say yes to raising gas taxes. why is that, pat? caller: good morning. happy new year to everyone. i think we need to increase taxes. no matter whether we like it or not, 50 years from now in this kuntz try we will use mainly high-speed electro magnetic
rail. it is the wave of the future. now, the u.s. is going kicking and screaming while the rest of the world is getting sir their ducks in a row. this is the perfect opportunity for america with the republicans in charge to get ahold of this idea and make it a public/private enterprise like the railroads were. it would put so many people to work. we would have to use steel plants, all kinds of coal and aluminum, glass plants that have been shutdown and so much of a labor force to do this. you dedicate certain corridors for this high-speed rail to transport goods as well as people truckins trains are converting to, this could be a national project, private and
public finance and make wall street boom, put people to work, and it would bring us into the 21st century. host: pat, thank you for the call. some were saying impose a tax on wall street transactions and devote it to infrastructure and debt reduction and nothing else. gas tax hits the poor. by the way, the front page of today's houston chronicle is focusing on big oil seeking help from wartdz and crude prices continue to hit a new low, the industry is looking for a chance to lighten the load when it comes to regulation. in connecticut, next call, frank is on the phone. good morning. what's your answer on this? bridges and tolls need a lot of money. what are we saying? the only way we could address these issues is get a gas tax? i mean i think we have to put focus on what's important here. if it is indeed important as we
all would surmise, i think we just figure out a way to get the money in there anyway. host: okay. caller: a lot of places where the money can come from. we don't need to resort to something like this to begin this process. that's my point. i think we are missing the plane entirely. host: thanks for the call. melissa from memphis, tennessee. good morning. tricia, are you with us? try one more time for patricia. are you with us? lost the call. i apologize for that. one viewer saying the gas tax is high enough already. another increase in gas taxes as to inflation of all goods and services. a couple of other views of the head line this morning from the boston sunday globe, the passing of edward brook elected in 1966. he was re-elected but lost his bid for a third term. he is the first african-american elected by the public to serve in the u.s. senate and so far the only one to serve two terms to be re-elected. also the legacy of deval
patrick and a look at four-term governor jerry brown first elected back in 1974, succeeded ronald reagan as he deals with economic issues across california as he begins his work for -- fourth term in. from the "miami herald" florida's road to same-sex marriage. some things have changed. but something hasn't changed every day on the kwasht"washington journal," what many of you are reading. this is how the program began 20 years ago today as we kicked off this program here on c-span. [video clip". >> welcome to "washington journal" on january 4th t there is the front page of "u.s.a. today" it says watch and be amazed. republicans promise different kind of politics a character tour of newt gingrich. as you move through that cover story, you can see that the headline is opening day, start of the revolution.
it's by richard wolfe. >> that's the paper you can buy all over the united states on this wednesday in washington where the temperature is probably about 30 degrees. there is not much wind out there and we welcome you to our new start time every day at 7:00 a.m. if you live on the east coast. some of you on the west coast have let us know it's a little early out there at 4:00 a.m. host: the first "washington journal." among our first guest, senate bob dole and barney frank, democrat from massachusetts. thank you for watching over the last 20 years. we will begin the conversation again tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern time. we will preview the new congress with bob kusack the executive elder of the hill newspaper.