August 25, 2022

Let’s Go Joe!

By Glenn

Between January 20, 2001 and July 14, 2008 prices at the gas pump rose from $1.47 per gallon to $4.11 per gallon.  During that extended price rise, two Texas oil men sat in the Oval Office and made decisions.  Dramatically, gas prices fell to $1.61 by December 2008.  

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney created an environment favorable to the Big Oil companies, and they drove prices up.  Unfortunately, Bush and Cheney also removed restriction on Wall Street and created the worst recession since the Great Depression.  That recession drove down prices. 

When President Barack Obama took office, he stabilized and grew the economy.  Obama cut middle class taxes, expanded healthcare access, saved the US auto industry and sparked the creation of 8.9 million jobs.

It should not have been a surprise that gas prices rebounded to the level Big Oil set.  The market, however, couldn’t sustain prices at $4 per gallon.  Consumers started saving fuel by driving fewer miles and driving more fuel efficient cars. 

By the end of President Obama’s second term in office retail gas prices stayed consistently around $2.50 per gallon.  In the four years Donald Trump occupied the Oval Office, prices at the pump fluctuated dramatically.

 Prices started off at $2.56 and then rose to $2.96 in fewer 5 months.  Prices then plunged in October from $2.90 to the January 2019 low of $2.23.  By May they had swung back up to $2.89 per gallon. 

Everything changed, however, in spring of 2020.  Covid 19 began killing Americans and Donald choose to lie about it.  Throughout the month of February he compared it to the seasonal flu.

On February 26, Donald said “This is a flu. This is like a flu. It’s a little like a regular flu that we have flu shots for. And we’ll essentially have a flu shot for this in a fairly quick manner.”

Covid was not like the flu. As it killed millions globally, demand for gasoline plummeted and so did prices. In April of 2020 they stood at $1.77 per gallon and only gradually rose back to $2 per gallon on Election Day 2020.

Since that time the unemployment rate in April 2020 high of 14% to 3.6%.  In the first fifteen months of Joe Biden’s Presidency, the United States economy added 8.3 million jobs.  It was no surprise then that gas prices rose back to $3 per gallon—right where Big Oil thought they could sustain them.

What was a surprise was Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the Ukraine. It sent oil markets into a panic.  That panic drove prices up to $5 per gallon.

Joe Biden, however, didn’t panic.  He had a sure and steady hand on the rudder.  America is sailing into strong head winds and making progress. The sure steady hand has helped bring prices at the pump down to earth. Let’s Go Joe!

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