CNN Business and Politics correspondent Vanessa Yurkevich said Tuesday that people are “okay” with paying high gas prices if it “holds Russia accountable.”
“If you look at it globally, if the European Union decides to do something similar as to what President Biden is going to be doing in his announcement,” she told CNN’s Kate Bolduan. “Stopping all Russian imports and energy into the country. That could have a significant ripple effect on the global energy market, then pushing prices here at home at the pump a lot higher. People we’ve spoken to over the last couple weeks, they’re okay with paying higher prices if it means holding Russia accountable for what they are doing in Ukraine.”
Yurkevich said gas prices are likely going to surge higher with the Tuesday ban on all new imports of Russian oil and gas. The cost of gas recently exceeded $4 per gallon, the highest recorded price ever recorded in the U.S. (RELATED: Biden Say He ‘Can’t Do Much Right Now’ About Rising Gas Prices)
“We’ll see how they feel in the next week or so,” Yurkevich continued.
Bolduan said a major question is whether imposed sanctions and the new ban will change Russian President Vladimir Putin’s behavior.
Biden’s ban followed a bipartisan push by lawmakers to step away from any dependency on Russian energy in order to hold the country accountable for waging war in Ukraine. Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin introduced the Banning Russian Energy Imports Act on Thursday, earning support from over a dozen Democratic and Republican congressmen.
The U.S. imported over 670,000 barrels of oil per day from Russia in 2021, a 24% year-to-year increase from 2020, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
CBS senior White House correspondent Ed O’Keefe read reactions from the public on surging gas prices to White House press secretary Jen Psaki during Monday’s press conference. One person said “I just never imagined the cost of gas to be so high” and “It’s a huge stressor for my financial situation.”