Stephen Moore / Jan. 21, 2015

Private Sector, Not Obama, Created Lower Gas Prices

In President Obama's State of the Union preview, he touted low gas prices as an example of positive economic results. "America is now in a position to really turn the page," he said and cited in part the fact that "gas prices have dropped." No doubt, the plunge in gas prices from $4 per gallon to just over $2 has benefited the economy. Drivers enjoy the cost savings at the pump each week; many families are saving upwards of $400 monthly in lowered fuel costs. Lower energy costs also bolster employment growth as goods can be produced less expensively. As transportation costs decline, retail prices decline as well. But can the president claim credit for these savings? Not so much.

In President Obama’s State of the Union preview, he touted low gas prices as an example of positive economic results. “America is now in a position to really turn the page,” he said and cited in part the fact that “gas prices have dropped.”

No doubt, the plunge in gas prices from $4 per gallon to just over $2 has benefited the economy. Drivers enjoy the cost savings at the pump each week; many families are saving upwards of $400 monthly in lowered fuel costs. Lower energy costs also bolster employment growth as goods can be produced less expensively. As transportation costs decline, retail prices decline as well.

But can the president claim credit for these savings? Not so much.

Recall that during the 2012 presidential campaign, Obama mocked those who insisted that drilling could alleviate the high cost of energy. “…You can bet that since it’s an election year, they’re already dusting off their three-point plans for $2 gas. I’ll save you the suspense: Step one is drill, step two is drill and step three is keep drilling,” proclaimed the president. His rant continued, “We’ve heard the same thing for thirty years. Well the American people aren’t stupid. You know that’s not a plan – especially since we’re already drilling. It’s a bumper sticker. It’s not a strategy to solve our energy challenge…. anyone who tells you we can drill our way out of this problem doesn’t know what they’re talking about – or isn’t telling you the truth.”

In word and in deed, Obama has made no secret of his abhorrence of the oil, gas and coal industries. Through regulation at EPA, through a virtual drilling moratorium on federal lands, and by not building pipelines, the president has done almost everything imaginable to stop domestic oil production. For him to take credit for cheaper energy is like Brandon Bostick taking credit for the Seattle Seahawks going to the Super Bowl.

Just compare the figures for crude oil and natural gas production on federal lands in fiscal year 2013 (the latest data available) vs. 2009. On federal lands, crude oil production declined more than 6 percent; natural gas production plunged nearly 30 percent. Meanwhile, on private land crude oil production skyrocketed 61 percent while natural gas production increased nearly 33 percent.

And make no mistake. Even these gains in private sector production were realized in spite of the Obama administration’s best efforts. Consider the EPA’s Sue and Settle scheme which puts prime private energy-producing acreage off-limits as a result of giveaways to environmentalist groups.

Don’t expect to see any contemporary natural gas and drilling executives showcased as Obama guests at tonight’s State of the Union. But in the end, the people most responsible for America’s energy revival have been Floyd Farris (of the Stanolind Oil and Gas Corporation) the inventor of hydraulic fracturing and Harold Hamm, the driller in North Dakota who put these new technologies into action creating tens of thousands of jobs.

The private sector delivered the domestic energy boom and lower gas prices – despite attempts by anti-carbon ideologues and misguided bureaucrats.


Republished from The Daily Signal.

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!

★ PUBLIUS ★

“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2021 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.