Sen. Harding on High Grocery Bills: Democrats’ Policies Spiked Those Costs

June 11, 2024

Wayne Pesce, president of the Connecticut Food Association, which represents grocery stores in Connecticut, says the rise in food prices “is complex and requires the expertise of a microeconomist not elected politicians,” and that the prices reflect not only inflation but increases in transportation, energy, labor, and operational costs, and he questioned the motivations behind the inquiry.

“Suggesting that retail prices begin and end at the checkout register, and accusing food retailers of price gouging, is disingenuous at best,” Pesce said in an email. “Grocery outlets furiously compete for customers and, more than anybody, are aware that today’s pricing environment is unprecedented in scope and negatively impacts their customers.”

“Unfortunately, a minority of Democratic legislators are focused solely on local food retailers who strive to keep their prices in check,” Pesce continued. “Will the AG’s office investigate the oil, utilities, healthcare, automotive, construction, and banking industries – or is this a national campaign talking point that’s landed in Connecticut for political gain?”

Republican leaders in the General Assembly, like Senators Stephen Harding, R-Brookfield, and Heather Somers, R-Groton, issued a statement highlighting Connecticut’s increased minimum wage and highway use tax on trucks as contributing to the increased food prices. “Democrat-supported policies have repeatedly driven up the cost of everything in Connecticut,” Harding and Somers said.

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