Concerns about rising fuel prices have spilled into the U.S. presidential election campaign with both Republican nominee John McCain and Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton calling for a gas tax ‘holiday’ this summer. They want to see the current 18.4 cent per gallon tax on fuel lifted for the period between May-end and Labour Day.

Democratic rival Barack Obama has called the plan a short-term “gimmick” but it may prove popular with working-class voters in the states of Indiana and North Carolina where Clinton is currently campaigning. Clinton has taken the issue a step further and has called for an additional tax on oil company profits, which continue to reach record levels, to help fund the tax break on regular petrol, reports the Associated Press.

"Middle-class families are paying too much and oil companies aren't paying their fair share to help us solve the problems at the pump," Clinton said in North Carolina.

Obama has said the tax holiday would save the average American just $28 and would rob funding from vital infrastructure projects around the country and could actually cost jobs.