Poll shows Obama’s gas price troubles persist

Obama, seeking to limit political damage from high pump prices, has given several recent speeches on energy policy, including four over two days during a March 21-22 visit to Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Ohio.

Obama has said the administration is looking into potential market manipulation, but generally emphasized there are no quick fixes.

The president, in recent speeches, has touted his support for domestic oil-and-gas production while arguing that the United States also needs to diversify away from oil with green energy and advanced vehicles.

The new poll also shows that the public is spreading blame for the recent rise in gasoline prices, which could be leveling off shy of a nationwide average of $4 per gallon. 

Regular gasoline is averaging $3.92 per gallon nationwide, according to AAA.

There is little that policymakers can do, especially in the short term, to lower gasoline prices that are tethered to crude oil prices set on world markets, experts say.

Twenty-five percent of adults surveyed in the poll blame other oil-producing countries for the recent rise in oil and gasoline prices, 28 percent blame U.S. oil companies and 21 percent blame the Obama administration.

The gas price question was part of a much wider poll about Obama's performance on various issues and how he fares against likely GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney. The Hill’s Meghashyam Mali has much more on the poll here.

The new poll of 1,103 adults, conducted April 5-8, has an overall margin of error of 3.5 percent, although some questions — including the one about Obama’s handling of gas prices — were only asked of half the sample, which boosts the uncertainty somewhat.