President Joe Biden announced Wednesday that his administration is once again dipping into the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve in an effort to bring prices at the pump down. This, of course, comes mere weeks ahead of the midterm elections next month.
Even before this action, total reserves are already down one-third during the Biden administration and at their lowest levels since 1984.
The reserve was created after the oil crisis of the 1970s as an energy safety net for times of crisis.
In a White House briefing on Tuesday leading up to Wednesday’s announcement, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre predictably claimed the release was to “address Putin’s price hike.”
Experts believe that the actual effect on U.S. gas prices will be minimal. The country consumes roughly 20 million barrels of oil every day, so the sale of another 15 million does not make much of a dent.
Even the president acknowledged that America’s oil reserves have been drained, but he pledged that his administration will acquire crude to refill the tanks when prices fall to $70 per barrel.
BIDEN: "By selling from the [oil reserve] at the higher price of $90 earlier this year and then re-filling it in the future at a lower price around $70 will actually make money."
President Trump wanted to fill the reserves when oil was $24/barrel, but Democrats blocked him. pic.twitter.com/C3OyXM1Qfs
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 19, 2022
It was June when gas prices hit a record average of $5.02 per gallon. Domestic prices have fallen since that high but have inched back up in the past few weeks. OPEC+ announced that it is cutting production by 2 million barrels per day before prices surged again.
The president told reporters Wednesday that tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is “not politically motivated at all.” That statement came on a day when his approval rating sat at a mere 43% and the countdown to November’s midterms continued.
Only three presidents other than Biden have dipped into the reserve, which is kept for times of national emergency but is now severely depleted.
What should be clear to all is that the nation is suffering the consequences of Democrats’ war on domestic oil production that began the day Biden took office. The U.S. has enough energy to make Putin irrelevant, but the White House consistently stands in the way of retrieving and using it.