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Hillary and the gas tax

From NBC's Mark Murray
As we mentioned earlier, Hillary Clinton is calling for a holiday on the 18.4-cent gasoline tax, and she says she'd make up the funding from that (which funds transportation infrastructure) by taxing oil company's "windfall" profits.

But it's worth pointing out that Clinton OPPOSED efforts to cut or repealĀ gas taxes during her 2000 Senate contest against Rick Lazio. It's also worth pointing out -- as the RNC has for last several days -- that Obama supported a holiday on Illinois' state gas tax when he was in the IL Senate (although as PoliFact later noted that Obama voted against legislation making the reduction permanent).

Here's what Clinton said at her October 8, 2000 debate with Lazio: "[O]ne of my fundamental disagreements during this campaign with my opponent was when he called for the repeal of the gas tax. Now, the gas tax is one of those few taxes that New York actually gets more money from Washington than we send. And we are totally reliant on it to do things like finishing I-86 in the Southern Tier, or the fast- ferry harbor works up in Rochester, as well as the work we need to do here in the city. So you can count on me to support infrastructure."

And here's a June 28, 2000 Newsday clip: "Campaigning in the Hudson Valley, Lazio continued a two-day assault on Clinton's support of maintaining the 18-cent federal gas tax and then used tough rhetoric to declare that 'trust' and 'character' were campaign issues during an evening fundraiser in Manhattan that raised more that $1 million. Clinton, meanwhile, lashed out at Lazio's plan to repeal 4.3 cents of the gas tax, calling it 'a bad deal for New York and a potential bonanza for the oil companies.'"

"During a visit to a shopping mall in the Buffalo suburbs, Clinton said that 'the gas tax is one of the few exceptions where we actually get more money back than we send to Washington.'"

(Hat tip to Political Base.)

*** UPDATE *** Clinton spokesman Phil Singer tells First Read that Clinton's opposition to gas-tax reductions/repeals in 2000 was due to the fact that they would take money out of the Highway Trust Fund. Her current proposal -- as mentioned above -- makes up for any money lost by taxing oil company windfall profits.