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President Joe Biden is calling on Congress to suspend the federal gas tax for three months through September, amid soaring gas prices that have reached around $5 per gallon.

The 18.4-cents-per-gallon gas tax (or 24.4 cents per gallon for diesel) is an excise added to the price consumers pay at the pump. Both federal and state governments impose gas taxes, using much of the revenue raised to fix roads and fund other infrastructure projects (see overview). Drivers may not reap the full benefits of a gas tax holiday—oil and gas companies, who collect and remit the tax to the government, would need to pass the savings on to consumers. 

Biden is also asking states to suspend their own gas taxes or offer similar relief (see state efforts). Economists and some lawmakers are skeptical of a gas tax holiday, saying it could inadvertently increase demand for fuel, while costing the government $10B in tax revenues.