Gas prices have more than doubled since Biden took office

by Chris Lange

Chris Lange, FISM News


Gas prices continued to jump over the weekend with at least one California station posting $9.60 per gallon Friday afternoon.

The national average is currently at $4.865, according to AAA, with 10 states plus Washington D.C. now above $5/gallon. The current average for a gallon of regular gasoline has more than doubled since the day President Biden took office, when the average price per gallon was $2.39. A May 19 JP Morgan research note predicting that gas would hit $6 a gallon by August appears that it may have underestimated how soon the U.S. would reach the watershed mark, given that price jumps are occurring with more frequency and at greater percentages than in mid-May. 

The staggering numbers highlight the struggles working families continue to face amid the highest inflation rates the nation has seen in four decades.

President Biden conceded last week that there is little he can do at this time to bring relief to Americans struggling with rising prices on fuel and everyday items, marking a departure from previous assurances that his administration could blunt costs for working families. The president also cautioned that inflation is likely to persist for some time, following months of saying it was merely transitory. 

“There’s a lot going on right now but the idea we’re going to be able to click a switch, bring down the cost of gasoline, is not likely in the near term,” he said. “We can’t take immediate action that I’m aware of yet to figure out how we’re bringing down the prices of gasoline back to $3 a gallon.” 

Despite these admissions, Biden has stopped short of claiming any responsibility for rising costs, instead doubling down on his references to inflation as “Putin’s price hike” and calling on Congress to pass his clean energy investment proposal.  Republican lawmakers maintain that the administration’s anti-fossil fuel policies and out-of-control spending are chiefly to blame for rising costs.

The president also reasserted his claim that gas prices will start to drop with releases from the strategic petroleum reserve; however, energy experts have called the claims ‘misleading,” according to a report by The Washington Times.

“Following separate releases at the end of 2021 and earlier this year, fuel costs continued to tick upward. The administration is currently releasing one million barrels of oil per day through October, which failed to prevent weekly all-time highs,” the Times wrote.

Meanwhile, as costs continue to spike, so does the threat of voter backlash against the party in power in November’s midterm elections. A Reuters-Ipsos poll released last week found that 71% of Americans now disapprove of the way Biden is handling inflation and 72% disapprove of his handling of gas prices.

“Joe Biden‘s war on American energy has forced families across the country to empty their wallets to fill their tanks,” Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel said in a statement provided to the Times. “Unfortunately, Biden is doubling down on his disastrous agenda because he‘s not the one paying the price — the American people are.”