Gas Tax Dagger?
If there is reason in this world, then a proclamation (pdf) surfacing today should be the final word on the debate over whether eliminating the federal gas tax for the summer makes good economic sense.
Signed by 138 economists — including three Nobel laureates — the short message indicates that a "gas-tax holiday" would encourage consumption, add to deficits and enrich oil companies, all while providing little relief to consumers.
As economists who study issues of energy policy, taxation, public finance, and budgeting, we write to indicate our opposition to this policy. Put simply, suspending the federal tax on gasoline this summer is a bad idea and we oppose it.
The message ends with a disclaimer:
Signers of this letter are Democrats, Republicans and Independents. This is not a partisan issue. It is a matter of good public policy.
Back to you, John McCain and Hillary Clinton.