Thursday, May 05, 2011
Voters strongly believe the government can do something to lower rising gas prices, but they have mixed feelings about dropping the federal gas tax.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 44% of American Adults say the government should eliminate the federal gasoline tax until prices at the pump come down. But 35% disagree and say the government should not eliminate this tax. Twenty-one percent (21%) are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
In early April 2008, the last time gas prices soared, 60% of Americans believed the federal tax on gasoline should be suspended until prices went down.
The federal excise tax on gasoline is 18.4 cents per gallon for regular.
With gas prices nearing record highs, an overwhelming majority (67%) believe the government has the power to lower these prices in the short-term. Fourteen percent (14%) don't share that assessment, and 19% are undecided. The question did not specify what kinds of things the government might be able to do.
Thirty percent (30%) of Americans, however, blame government regulations for the high gas prices. Thirty-four percent (34%) say oil speculators, those who buy and sell large quantities of oil on international markets, are more to blame. Sixteen percent (16%) say the unrest in the Middle East is the chief cause of the high prices. Thirteen percent (13%) think something else is to blame.
(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.
The survey of 1,000 Adults nationwide was conducted on April 30-May 1, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
ORBecome a member and get full access to all articles and polls starting at $4.95/month.
Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.
We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.
To learn more about our methodology, click here.