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OPINION

New Poll: 82 Percent of Likely Voters ‘Concerned’ About Rising Gas Prices Under Biden

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

This week, the average price for a gallon of gas reached yet another all-time high of $4.37. Adding to the bad news, the average price for a gallon of diesel fuel has also reached a new record-high of $5.55 as of this writing.

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No wonder, according to a new poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports on behalf of The Heartland Institute, 82 percent of likely voters say they are either “very” or “somewhat concerned” about rising energy and gas prices under the Biden administration.

Since Joe Biden entered the Oval Office, the cost of energy (especially gasoline and diesel fuel) has absolutely skyrocketed, and this was occurring well before Vladimir Putin arrayed his troops on the Ukrainian border.

Consider. When Biden entered the Oval Office, the average price for a gallon of gasoline was $2.42. By May 2021, it had spiked to $3.08. In December 2021, it increased to $3.40. In February 2022, before Putin invaded Ukraine, it rose to $3.61. And, now, with the summer driving season upon us, the price for a gallon of gasoline is steadily climbing towards $5.00 per gallon.

Perhaps Biden’s reckless release of 180 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve wasn’t such a good idea after all, seeing as how it has had little to no impact on the price of gasoline.

So, what do likely voters think Biden should do to lower exorbitant prices at the pump? Per the poll cited above, 60 percent of likely voters favor “a law that would dramatically increase oil and gas drilling in the United States.”

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What’s more, 76 percent of Republicans, 57 percent of Independents, and even 46 percent of Democrats agree on this commonsense solution, something almost unheard of in today’s super-divisive political environment.

Even more interesting, 52 percent of likely voters (including 54 percent of Independents) “think President Biden and Congress should focus more on “increasing oil and gas drilling to help reduce energy prices” than “limiting carbon dioxide emissions in an attempt to reduce climate change.”

While only 34 percent of Democrats favor increased drilling over limiting carbon dioxide emissions, this is not unexpected, considering 71 percent of likely Democratic voters believe climate change will be catastrophic for humans, plants, and animals within the next 100 years.

On the other hand, 63 percent of Republicans and 53 percent of Independents have the opposite view, which explains why these groups prefer increased oil and gas production in the United States.

Expectedly, young likely voters are the most concerned about climate change, which makes perfect sense considering they have been browbeaten into this line of thinking courtesy of America’s public schools. As a former high school teacher at multiple public schools, I can assure you that climate change alarmism is the norm in today’s indoctrination factories posing as schools.

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However, in a breathtaking display of cognitive dissonance, 73 percent of young likely voters are “concerned” about rising gas prices.

Apparently, logic is in short supply among this cohort.

Yet, the shortage in logic (as well as commonsense) does not seem limited to America’s youth.

President Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) have been around for a long while. They experienced the 1970s energy crisis and the stagflation that followed it.

So, why in the world are these “leaders” pursuing policies that will make the 1970s energy crisis look like a walk in the park?

Obviously, that is a question only they can answer. However, I believe part of the reason our “leaders” are pursuing policies that are exacerbating the problem of sky-high prices at the pump is simply because they are so hopelessly out-of-touch that they simply don’t know any better. When is the last time any one of those three actually filled up their own tank of gas? Even better, when is the last time one of them drove their own car?

This is not an excuse. And it could very well be that they simply don’t care about Americans’ struggles to fill up their gas tanks. I am not a mind-reader, so I can’t be sure.

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But, I do know that the vast majority of likely voters are fed-up with paying an arm and a leg every time they pull into a gas station.

And I also know that the 2022 midterm elections are approaching. So, I would dare to guess that if our “leaders” do not listen to the will of we the people and address the crisis of rising energy and gas prices very soon, they will be in for a very rude awakening come November.

Chris Talgo (ctalgo@heartland.org) is senior editor at The Heartland Institute.

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