“Are you saying that we would rather have lower gas prices in America and Putin’s iron fist in Europe?” Biden said. “I don’t believe that.”

Biden asked oil companies to increase refining capacity and pass “every penny” of their savings from the proposed gas tax holiday on to consumers. Earlier Wednesday he called for a three-month suspension of the 18-cent-per-gallon federal gas tax, but it seems unlikely to pass in Congress.

In his speech, the president said states should also find other solutions to lower consumer gas prices, such as eliminating their own gas taxes or offering rebates to households.

A combination of all Biden’s asks — a federal gas tax holiday, state gas tax holidays, increased refinery capacity and oil companies and gas stations passing on savings to consumers — could lower gas prices by about a dollar a gallon, he said.

The federal gas tax is used to fund highways, but Biden said highways would continue to be maintained through higher tax revenues and a lower deficit this year.

“We can do both at the same time,” Biden said. “We can bring down the price of gas and give families just a little bit of relief.”

In the long term, Biden said, the experience of rising gas prices demonstrates a need for electric vehicles, expanded public transportation systems and alternative energy resources such as wind, solar and nuclear.