"In the next few weeks, I expect Congress to vote on ending these subsidies. And when they do, we’re going to put every single member of Congress on record: They can either stand up for oil companies, or they can stand up for the American people," Obama said in his weekly radio and Internet address.
Obama urged American voters to write to or call Congress members in their own constituencies to support his efforts to end the subsidies for big oil companies, which he said "are making more money than ever before."
While stressing there is no "quick fix" for high gas prices, Obama touted what he has done to save American families money at the pump, including signing Wall Street reforms to stop traders from unfairly manipulating the energy market, and establishing historic fuel economy standards that will nearly double the efficiency of the vehicles.
Obama added that, since he took office, the U.S. has been producing more oil at home than at any time in the last eight years. "We’ve quadrupled the number of operating oil rigs to a record high, that’s a fact. And we’ve opened millions of acres on land and offshore to develop more of our domestic resources," he said.
The president stressed the need for developing alternative sources of energy to reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil, noting that the U.S. uses more than 20 percent of the world’s oil while it only has 2 percent of the world’s known oil reserves.
"If we don’t develop other sources of energy, and the technology to use less energy, we’ll continue to be dependent on foreign countries for our energy needs," he said.
Obama also said that his administration is also working hard to develop wind power and solar energy, biofuels and next-generation electric vehicles, as part of its efforts to increase energy efficiency.
The rising gas prices have brought the disapproval ratings of Obama in handling the economy to a record high of 50 percent, while 65 percent of Americans disapproved of the way Obama is dealing with rising gas prices, according to the Washington Post- ABC News poll published on Monday.