Energy & Environment

Psaki defends gas prices as ‘well in line’ with recent decades 

White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Friday said that gas prices have “stabilized” and defended them as “well in line” with recent decades as they reached the highest prices since 2014 ahead of Memorial Day weekend. 

“As Americans are hitting the road, they are paying less in real terms for gas than they have on average over the last 15 years — and they’re paying about the same as they did in May 2018 and May 2019,” Psaki said in a statement. 

“While prices have increased from the lows last year — as demand drastically dipped — prices at just about $3 per gallon are still well in line with what they’ve been in recent decades,” she added. 

The White House official also noted that prices have “stabilized” after climbing earlier this month, and noted that gas supply has also returned to normal after the temporary shutdown of a major pipeline earlier this month prompted panic buying. 

“This is due in part to the administration’s aggressive, whole-of-government response to the unprecedented shutdown of that pipeline,” she said. 

Gas prices reached their highest price since 2014 on Friday, costing an average of $3.04 per gallon nationally, according to AAA.

However, according to the organization, the price is much lower than gas prices were on Memorial Day weekend in 2014, reaching $3.65 per gallon. 

Going into Memorial Day weekend in 2018, gas prices averaged $2.93 and they averaged about $2.84 on the Friday before Memorial Day in 2019.  

Gas prices tend to increase in the summer months. This year, analysts have also said they expected to see prices jump as more people become vaccinated and travel more as the coronavirus pandemic dies down.

Republicans have seen rising prices as an opportunity to target the Biden administration

Meanwhile, as negotiations on an infrastructure package continue, Psaki reiterated the administration’s opposition to raising the tax on gasoline. 

“The president knows that gas prices are a pain point for Americans — especially the middle-class families he’s put at the center of his economic agenda. That’s why President Biden is opposed to any proposals to raise the gas tax,” she said. 

Tags economy Energy Gas Tax Jen Psaki Joe Biden Memorial Day

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