The price of gas

  • Article by: EDITORIAL , Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Updated: October 21, 2012 - 7:18 PM

Don't blame the president.


Photo: Suzanne Dechillo, Associated Press/NYT

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Again and again, Americans have been given tutorials on the price of gasoline, but the lessons don't stick because self-serving politicians keep distorting the facts.

So, once again, class, repeat: The president of the U.S. does not determine the pump price of gasoline.

Mitt Romney suggested in last week's debate that had President Obama done more to tap the oil in this country, gas prices wouldn't be around $4 a gallon. But Canada isn't dependent on any other country for its oil, and gasoline prices are up there, too.

The price of gas is set by the price of oil on the world market, which no president can really influence.

In fact, U.S. crude oil production is expected to increase 12 percent this year and 8 percent next year, but America's relatively small amount of crude is sold into the massive world oil market, where the demand for the fuel has increased oil's price by about 7 percent. Thus the nearly four bucks per gallon being paid for gas in this country.

Suffice it to say, the oil business is very complex. And politicians shouldn't use that complexity to try to snooker voters.


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