Senate Democrat facing tough re-election puts plenty of daylight between herself and Biden in new TV ad

Democrats blame oil companies for high gas prices

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said they want legislation to address price gouging and market manipulation. Fox News’ Chad Pergram with more.

Sen. Maggie Hassan wants voters in her home state of New Hampshire to know that she’s doing everything she can to help ease the pain of soaring gas prices.

The former governor and first-term senator, who faces a potentially challenging re-election in this November's midterms, went up on Monday with a new TV ad that spotlights her push to temporarily eliminate the federal gas tax.

"Gas prices – we know the story. And while all of us are paying the price, one senator is fighting to lower your costs," the narrator says in the new ad.

WITH GAS PRICES SOARING, DEMOCRATIC SENATORS FACING TOUGH RE-ELECTIONS PUSH TO TEMPORARILY SCRAP FEDERAL GAS TAX

The spot includes a clip from a local TV news report that says, "Hassan is on a mission to try to ease the pain at the pump. She wants to suspend the federal gas tax for the rest of the year."

The senator then puts some daylight between herself and her party and President Biden, emphasizing in the commercial, "I am taking on members of my own party to push a gas tax holiday, and I am pushing Joe Biden to release more of our oil reserves. That’s how we lower costs and get through these times."

The Hassan campaign tells Fox News Digital their new commercial, which starts running statewide in New Hampshire on Monday, is backed by a "substantial" ad buy.

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Hassan and fellow first-term Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly of Arizona, who both hail from key general election battleground states and are being targeted by Republicans as they run for re-election, co-authored the bill in February, when the average national price for regular gasoline was nearing $3.50 per gallon. The national average as of Monday morning stood at $4.19 per gallon. 

Prices at a gas station in Newfields, New Hampshire, on May 2, 2022. (Fox News  / Fox News)

The Hassan/Kelly bill, which they titled the Gas Prices Relief Act, would scrap the 18.4-cents-per-gallon federal tax through the rest of 2022 and calls for the Treasury Department to make sure the savings are passed on to consumers rather than the oil and gas companies. 

And the measure, if passed into law, would also require the federal government to transfer money into the Highway Trust Fund, which is used for road construction and maintenance and supporting mass transit, to make up for the lost revenues.

ANOTHER REPUBLICAN JUMPS INTO THE RACE TO TAKE ON SEN. HASSAN IN NOVEMBER

The unrelenting impact of soaring gas prices – and the overall surge in inflation – continues with just six months to go until November’s elections, when the Democrats hope to retain their razor-thin majorities in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate.

Democrats are facing historical headwinds – the party that wins the White House traditionally suffers setbacks in the ensuing midterms – and they’re facing a brutal political climate compounded by the president’s flagging approval ratings. 

Partially fueling the adverse conditions and the consistent decline in Biden’s standing among Americans has been the steep rise in consumer prices as the nation’s economy rebounds after being flattened by the coronavirus pandemic.

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Poll after poll shows that inflation is a top concern among Americans. And for nearly a year, Republicans have been blaming the massive government spending bills, that were passed first under President Donald Trump and over the past year under Biden, for fueling the rise in prices. And they’re using inflation as a campaign weapon against Democrats running for re-election this year.

The Republican National Committee took aim at Hassan after the launch of her new ad.

"Maggie Hassan’s latest ad is yet another election-year gimmick from a desperate career politician," spokesman Andrew Mahaleris argued. "Hassan’s failure to stand up for American energy led to these sky-high gas prices and Granite Staters will show her the door this November."

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