Today’s escalating gas prices make up the kindling that is fueling a major political blaze that have Republicans and Democrats in a heated matchup: U.S. President Barack Obama is using the gas prices to push the need for a greater mix of energy sources, while his Republican opponents are expected to push drilling – an idea Obama believes is condescending to the American people.
Obama has made it clear that he doesn’t think continuing to drill will solve the problem of high gas prices in America. This is the plan he expects Republicans to present to the public, and he argues that it will not pass because “the American people aren’t stupid.”
“That’s not a plan, especially since we’re already drilling. That’s a bumper sticker,” Obama said recently. “It’s not a strategy to solve our energy challenge. That’s a strategy to get politicians through an election. You know there are no quick fixes to this problem.”
Obama’s proposed fix is to combine the use of biofuel with nuclear, solar, wind and gas power in addition to relying on oil. He also aims to decrease the United States’ dependence on foreign oil long term. All the while, Republicans are criticizing Obama for rejecting the extension of the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline earlier this year – a project that could have created thousands of American jobs and made the nation less dependent on foreign oil.
Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich has claimed to be able to decrease prices to $2.50 a gallon, while candidate Rick Santorum has acknowledged that paying $5 a gallon for gas is a reality. If the Republicans have their way, the fact that more than half of Americans are displeased with the current situation involving gas prices will put Obama in jeopardy during this year’s presidential race.
Still, the generation of gas and oil definitely has risen during Obama’s presidential term, based on information from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. If the trend keeps going this direction, the level of gas production experienced in 1994 finally will be possible again in 2020.
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