As international tensions and Wall Street speculation move the national gas price average closer to $4, Republicans have charged that Obama is “intentionally” raising prices. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said the “single biggest obstacle to greater domestic energy production is the Obama administration.”
But, as Business Insider’s Joe Weisenthal points out, attacks that claim we’re “not expanding our domestic energy capacity” like Cornyn’s “couldn’t be more misguided.”
With gas price misinformation everywhere, a few facts on oil production stand out:
— Under the Obama administration, domestic energy production is at its highest level in eight years.
— The U.S. has more oil and natural gas drilling rigs than the rest of the world. The number of rigs have exploded in the past three years to 1,272.
— “After declining to levels not seen since the 1940s, U.S. crude production began rising again in 2009,” writes the Houston Chronicle.
— The five oil giants benefited from $200 million more profit for every penny rise in quarterly gas prices. Yet the industry still benefits from $40 billion in subsidies.
Clearly, we’re producing more oil:
Strangely, Buzzfeed argues this chart by the Obama administration “demonstrates how to play politics with statistics.” The main reason that our import mix is declining is that production has increased while we move to reduce oil dependence altogether with clean energy investments and new fuel efficiency standards that cut carbon pollution and more than $2.2 million barrels of oil per day.