(06/14/2005)
By Bob Weaver

Little relief in sight at the gas pumps.

Gasoline prices seem destined to remain above $2, with big oil corporations wanting Americans to blame these sky-high rates on the extreme price of foreign crude, which supposedly cut into refiner profits so badly that the corporations had no choice but to jack up pump prices.

Oil company profits have soared to record-breaking heights.

Oil executives are pocketing record-breaking salaries.

ExxonMobil's CEO Lee Raymond pocketed $38 million last year, and other oil executives reaped salaries in the multi-millions.

Rep. Nick Joe Rahall (WV) said ExxonMobil "broke the U.S. record by reporting a 2004 profit of $25.43 billion, taking the title away from Ford."

He said Chevron's profit jumped 84 percent and ConocoPhillips earnings leaped 72 percent.

Rahall said "These fat cats are taking hundreds of dollars from each family in West Virginia and putting it directly into their wallets."


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