Amazon founder apparently backs oil and gas companies that prey on ordinary Americans, White House says
Washington has hit back at Jeff Bezos, after he criticized US President Joe Biden for calling on oil and gas companies to lower gasoline prices. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the Amazon founder and billionaire appears to support a market situation that allows companies to prey on ordinary consumers and fails the American people.
Bezos earlier blasted Biden, saying the president apparently has a hard time understanding “basic market dynamics”. On Saturday, the president urged companies operating gas stations in the United States to “lower the price”. The Amazon founder then pointed the finger at inflation, arguing that it was “far too big a problem” for the White House to expect such action from the industry.
“It’s not ‘basic market dynamics'”, Jean Pierre arguedclaiming that oil prices have fallen about $15 over the past month, but gasoline prices have not reflected that.
“It’s a market that’s letting the American consumer down,” she said in a post on Twitter. Jean-Pierre went on to say that it was no surprise that Bezos, who remains one of the richest people on the planet, behind Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk and the French fashion mogul and of cosmetics, Bérard Arnault, supports companies rather than people.
“It’s no surprise you think oil and gas companies using the power of the market to reap record profits at the expense of the American people is the way our economy is supposed to work,” White House spokeswoman said. Bezos has so far not commented on his outburst.
This isn’t the first time the Amazon founder has clashed with the White House. In mid-May, he accused Washington of further stimulating “an already overheated and inflationary economy.” The White House has previously accused Bezos of opposing the planned introduction of higher taxes for wealthy Americans.
The latest row comes as U.S. gasoline prices hit a record average of $5 a gallon in June. Biden blamed the price hike on Russia and its ongoing military operation in Ukraine. In late June, he also said the United States would endure economic turmoil for as long as necessary to continue supporting kyiv.
A survey last month, by polling firm Rasmussen, however, suggested that only 11% of Americans thought Moscow was to blame, while more than half pointed the finger at the White House itself.