INDIANAPOLIS – Hoosiers paying more for gas this Memorial Day weekend can thank Rep. Braun for their eyepopping prices, as Indiana is experiencing the nation’s largest gas price increase this year due largely to the tax hike enacted by Rep. Braun and Statehouse Republicans.
The Associated Press reported today that Indiana is tied with California for the nation’s largest gas price increase over the past year. Filling up a tank in Indiana now costs $2.84 a gallon on average, 30% more than it did a year ago, and is above $3.00 per gallon in some parts of the state. That 66 cent-per-gallon average increase is more than 20% higher than the average increase nationwide.
Blame for the nation-topping spike in gas prices has fallen on the gas tax increase enacted last year by Rep. Braun and Statehouse Republicans, according to the AP. Indiana’s gas tax is now the seventh highest is the country, and far more expensive than many neighboring states. “We will definitely attribute [higher gas prices] to their rise in gas tax,” a spokesperson for the American Automobile Association told the AP. Meanwhile, the executive director of the Indiana Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association said that the group is “so concerned because our taxes are much higher than neighboring states.”
Rep. Braun and his Republican Statehouse colleagues have faced criticism from across the political spectrum for the gas tax hike, which is the largest of the tax hikes Rep. Braun repeatedly voted to foist on Hoosiers while trying to cut his own. With more families hitting the road for their summer travel plans, it seems likely that Hoosiers who face increased pain at the pump will blame Rep. Braun for their woes as the campaign heats up.
“As Hoosier families prepare to get away for the holiday weekend, they’re reminded that their gas prices are rising faster than any other state thanks to Rep. Braun’s gas tax hike,” said Michael Feldman, spokesman for the Indiana Democratic Party. “Rep. Braun may claim he’s looking out for Hoosiers, but after voting for the gas tax increase and dozens of other tax hikes while cutting his own, it’s certainly not their wallets that he’s looking out for.”