WASHINGTON (AP) - Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is accusing the Obama administration of favoring higher energy prices as a way to prod Americans to buy more fuel-efficient cars.
Barbour, a potential presidential candidate, on Wednesday cited comments from President Barack Obama's energy secretary, Steven Chu. In a 2008 interview, Chu said a gradual increase in gasoline taxes could help move people away from gas-guzzling vehicles.
Obama has distanced himself from those comments. But Barbour says it is more proof that Obama wants to increase energy costs. Barbour, a former Republican National Committee chairman, says increased gas prices have had a devastating effect on his state's economy, and he says Obama wants to double those prices.
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