Gas Prices Spike Almost 30 Cents In Just A Month, Posing Potential Headache For Biden

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Nick Pope Contributor
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The average per-gallon price of gasoline at the pump spiked by nearly 30 cents over the course of July, according to data from AAA, a rise which could complicate President Joe Biden’s campaign strategy for 2024.

The average per-gallon price at the pump currently sits at just under $3.83, up from just over $3.53 one month ago, according to AAA. The surging gas prices have brought prices up to an average level not seen since October 2022, according to AAA, and the rising prices may pose a political problem for Biden as the 2024 election cycle ramps up.

While gas prices are high on average this August, they are still lower than they were this time in August 2022, when Americans were paying just under $4.07 per gallon at the pump after the average price reached an all-time high of just over $5.01 per gallon in June 2022, according to AAA. In the first week of August 2020, around five months before Biden took office, the national average price hovered around $2.18 per gallon, according to AAA. (RELATED: ‘Bidenomics’ Is Driving The Trucking Industry Off the Road, Economists Say)

July’s price jump may intensify as planned OPEC+ production cuts, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, take hold in international markets. Summer temperatures also contribute to increased energy demand, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Last year’s price spike posed a major political issue for Biden, as Republicans have slammed his administration’s green policies while Americans absorb their impacts in their pocketbooks. Biden looks to be relying heavily on “Bidenomics” as a campaign selling point going into the 2024 race, a strategy which resurgent energy prices could complicate as election day draws closer.

Biden opted to release tens of millions of barrels of oil from the strategic petroleum reserve (SPR) in 2022 to tame surging gas prices ahead of that year’s midterm elections. The SPR, which is generally meant to serve as a supply in the event of war or a national emergency, could take “decades” to refill to peak levels after Biden’s decision to tap into it.

The Biden administration opted to delay refilling the SPR last week, citing higher oil prices and unfavorable market conditions. Rising oil prices threaten to exacerbate inflationary pressures that continue to dog the American economy, as rising energy prices typically reverberate through other sectors by making transportation and production processes more expensive, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The White House did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

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