March 2022 has seen U.S. gas prices hit their highest point ever, with the national average price per gallon at $4.17. A recent Quinnipiac University poll shows the high price of gas has created a serious problem for American families with 64% saying it’s a very or somewhat serious problem for themselves and their families. Another 21% say that gas prices have posed a not too serious problem, while 14% say that it has not been a problem at all.
Gas prices – and inflation overall – have been rising since the summer of 2021. While the increases were initially characterized by the Biden Administration as “transitory,” they’ve persisted. So now the White House has pivoted and blames rising prices on Russia’s Vladimir Putin for invading Ukraine. However, the source of the problem lies with the Biden Administration. Its attempts to stifle American oil and gas production with a ban early last year on any new federal oil and gas leasing and their new regulatory initiatives seek to cripple the oil and gas industry. These have, along with increased spending and loose monetary policy, created the current inflationary spiral.
The GOP is becoming the party of working families in the post-President Trump era. Problems created by the Biden Administration are now adversely impacting a majority of working families. This means that voters who may have traditionally not been moved by economic drivers will likely turn against Democrats this cycle. Democrats have given Republicans a key opportunity to own not just the issue of gas prices and energy regulation, but the broader issue of who’s better at fighting inflation. The difference between a good and great midterm election may well depend on the GOP’s effectiveness in prosecuting this issue.