NYC billionaire gas station owner rips Biden’s price blame game: We didn’t create the problem
Inflation will ‘go away’ if Biden opens up the oil spigots, John Catsimatidis told FOX Business
John Catsimatidis, the New York City billionaire and owner of 400 gas stations, slammed President Biden’s gas price blame game Friday, arguing station owners didn’t create the problem of record-high prices at the pump.
"This is ridiculous to put it on us. We're not the ones that created the problem," Catsimatidis told "Varney & Co."
The billionaire CEO's comments come on the heels of Biden calling on gas station owners to lower their prices during a White House event, Wednesday.
"Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you are paying for the product. Do it now. Do it today. Your customers, the American people, they need relief now," Biden remarked.
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Catsimatidis stressed that gas stations make a "certain margin" in the industry and disagreed with Biden.
"[Gas stations] have to pay their payroll. They have to pay their rent. They have to pay their electric bill, and it's the same margin that we've been making forever," he explained.
"It's no different. Sometimes it's to pay $0.02 less to some, sometimes it's $0.02 more."
Meanwhile, inflation hit a new 40-year high in February, climbing up to 7.9%, mainly due to an increase in gas prices.
On Friday, the national average of a gallon of gas was $4.92, according to AAA. Last year it was priced at $3.07 -- $1.85 less, as Americans continue to see skyrocketing prices at the pump.
When FOX Business host Stuart Varney asked Catsimatidis what would happen if he were to lower prices today at his gas stations, he responded: "I'd put my 5,000 employees…in jeopardy, and I'm not going to do that."
Catsimatidis, who is also the CEO of United Refining, noted his refinery operations will not go through oil "shortages."
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"We're not going to have shortages because we have our own pipelines that go into Canada and we're on the Canadian pipeline system," he said.
"This is part of the overall problem in our country that America…Canada and Alaska, we have 100 years’ worth of oil…open up the spigots. If we open up the spigots and flooded the market with oil, with crude oil, American crude oil, we bring the price of oil back…Inflation goes away."