Looking for someone to blame for high and continuing-to-rise gas prices at the pump, Senator Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is blaming a familiar villain — big corporations.
Warren has avoided blaming any government policies for rising inflation rates and instead blames large corporations. The senator previously accused grocery chains and the meat industry of raising prices to increase their profits.
During a recent interview, Warren discussed the economy and addressed inflation concerns from voters and was reminded by the host that she frequently blames software and food-processing companies and “corporate greed” for the state of the economy.
Senator Warren stood by her statement but also blamed the Covid-19 pandemic saying, “I think the primary cause of this bout of pricing increases starts with Covid,” she said.
“And the fact that we have supply chain kinks and that people rapidly shifted the demand curves so that demand for services went down and demand for goods went up. So those two forced prices up, that’s one part.”
For their part, Warren said she believes specific industries, including grocery chains and the meat industry, are fixing prices to expand their profits.
“What has also happened is that now that we’re living in America where there’s a lot more concentration in certain industries look at the oil industry, look at the meat industry, look at the groceries generally.”
“What’s happened is that these companies have said, ‘You know, we’ll pass along costs, but while we’re at it and everyone’s talking about rising costs, let’s just add an extra big dollop of cost increases to expand our profits,” said Warren.
“Part one, yes, very much the pandemic. Part two, companies that recognize that because they don’t face a lot of competition can goose those prices up.”
Senator Warren has frequently attacked corporate greed and specific industries as the source behind inflation and increasing costs.
As recently as November she called for the poultry industry to explain rising turkey costs, calling for an investigation into anti-competitive practices she believes may exist.
In December, she accused grocery store chains of exploiting the pandemic to increase profit and raise prices. However, many industries have said that supply-chain issues are behind the higher costs.
However, President Biden and his administration have since adopted the same talking points and are now blaming oil companies and Vladimir Putin for soaring gas prices.
Recently, Biden made remarks on inflation, saying, “But, but, but, it’s no excuse to exercise excessive price increases or padding profits or any kind of effort to exploit this situation or American consumers, exploit them. Russia’s aggression is costing us all, and it’s no time for profiteering or price gouging.”
In a separate interview, Senator Warren said price gouging is to blame for the rocketing prices at the pump.
The average price per gallon of gas has set new records. Warren emphasized that the high prices are great news for oil companies and their shareholders.
“Chevron, Exxon have doubled their profits. This isn’t about inflation; this is about price gouging for these guys,” said Warren.
Warren said that while Republicans are trying to gain political points by talking about inflation, the “oil companies say, ‘I think it’s just another opportunity to make profits’ and we need to call them out on that.”