From a recent AP article;
Obama argues that Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Republican Sen. John McCain — he calls them “the two Washington candidates” — are pandering to voters by proposing to suspend the federal gas tax of 18.4 cents a gallon for three months. He says a tax holiday would provide consumers little real relief, ignore the country’s energy problems and take money from road and bridge repairs.
“This is the problem with Washington. We are facing a situation where oil prices could hit $200 a barrel. Oil companies like Shell and BP just reported record profits for the quarter. And we’re arguing over a gimmick that would save you half a tank of gas over the course of the entire summer so that everyone in Washington can pat themselves on the back and say that they did something,” Obama says.
In 2000, gasoline prices were climbing quickly, reaching $2 a gallon in the Chicago area — a remarkable price back then. Illinois legislators scrambled to offer some election-year relief to angry motorists.
Obama voted three times for a tax holiday.
The version that ended up becoming law required a six-month suspension of the state’s share of the sales tax on gasoline, a 5 percent tax paid directly by consumers rather than gas stations. It also required gas stations to post signs on their pumps saying that the Illinois General Assembly had lowered taxes and the price should reflect that cut.