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June 16th, 2022
Rep. Grijalva Votes to Lower Food and Fuel Costs, Challenges GOP to Reveal Plan to Fight Inflation

WASHINGTON – Today, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03) voted for the Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act, legislation to lower costs in House Democrats’ comprehensive fight against inflation.  The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act will help bring down prices for Arizonans in the grocery aisle and at the gas pump by giving American farmers and ranchers the support they need.

“Today, I voted for additional action to bring down kitchen table costs for working Arizonans,” said Rep. Grijalva “Putin’s war in Ukraine is driving up the cost of fuel and food all over the world and other factors, including the devastation of the global pandemic, are causing rising prices.  This legislation is another tool in Democrat’s plan to fight inflation which includes: addressing the unfair, anti-competitive practices of powerful meatpacking conglomerates that have jacked up the price of meat and poultry in the supermarket, fighting Big Oil’s price gouging and record profits through windfall profit rebates and oversight, and shoring up our supply chains and increasing production to meet high demand. And I will continue to lead the fight for more transformational investments into clean renewable energies to break America free from the grasps of the ruthless fossil fuel dictators.”

“As House Democrats act, Republicans stand in unanimous opposition opposing bill after bill that would lower prices for working people. They decry higher gas prices and inflation, but have failed to provide a semblance of a plan or solutions to tackle rising costs. Americans should not be fooled by Republicans who are performative populists, crisis actors, displaying all hype and no content. Republicans seem content to leave working people suffering in hopes of scoring political points through their frustration while we as House Democrats have laid out our plans to address inflation and lower costs for the American people. So my question to Republicans is – where’s yours?”

The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act takes three steps to lower costs for America’s families: reduces fertilizer costs in the field to lower food prices in the grocery store, lowers meat and poultry costs by increasing meatpacking competition and capacity, and lowers prices at the pump by making Unleaded 88 (also known as E-15) more available.

  • Lower Fertilizer Costs in the Field to Lower Food Prices in the Grocery Store.Russia and Ukraine are major global producers of key components of fertilizer, and Putin’s war has dramatically driven up the costs of fertilizer for American farmers – in turn, driving up prices in the grocery store too.  The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act reduces our dependence on foreign fertilizer production and includes two bipartisan bills to help American farmers lower their costs with $500 million in USDA funds as well as loan guarantees to pay for solutions, including precision agriculture, to use fertilizers more efficiently.  Lower costs for farmers mean lower costs for families.
  • Lower Meat and Poultry Costs by Increasing Meatpacking Competition and Capacity.  Unfair, anti-competitive practices by the major meatpacking conglomerates who dominate the market are driving up the price of meat and poultry in the supermarket even as many of the men and women who raise the beef, pork and chicken are forced to accept prices that make it almost impossible to make ends meet. The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act strengthens competition in the meat and poultry sector and alleviates the supply chain bottlenecks that let meatpacking conglomerates set bad prices for producers and consumers alike.  The bill includes the bipartisan Butcher Block Act to expand and create new meat processing capacity and options to market cattle, as well as the bipartisan Meat & Poultry Special Investigator Act, establishing a USDA Special Investigator for Competition Matters with new powers to swiftly crack down on anti-competitive practices by meatpacking conglomerates in violation of the long-standing Packers and Stockyards Act.  Better enforcement will lead to greater competition in meat processing, fairer access to markets for producers and more price stability for consumers.
  • Lower Prices at the Pump by Making Unleaded 88 More Available.  Homegrown American ethanol grown by American farmers is a temporary tool to fight Putin’s Price Hike on American families. The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act expands access to lower-cost Unleaded 88 and taps the power of American farmers to help break the current grip of foreign autocrats weaponizing the price of oil and gas.

The Lower Food and Fuel Costs Act builds on House Democrats’ ongoing work to strengthen supply chains and bring down costs for working families.  Earlier this week, the Congress passed the Ocean Shipping Reform Act to ease the burden of rising costs for consumers, retailers and farmers by cracking down on exorbitant shipping fees.  The House previously passed the Consumer Fuel Price Gouging Prevention Act to combat Big Oil’s excessive gas price hikes.  Meanwhile, the House and Senate are continuing to advance a bold competitiveness package that will lower costs by reinvigorating American manufacturing while strengthening our supply chains.

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