President Joe Biden confirmed at a virtual meeting that gas prices have fallen for the last 38 days. Biden attended the meeting by video link due to his positive Covid-19 test on July 22nd.
Biden kicked-off the meeting by apologizing for his voice. “I feel much better than I sound.” He said of the falling gas prices: “I’ve been working to make sure that when the price of oil comes down, the price at the pump comes down as well and comes down in real time.”
Biden did however tell his economic team that despite the recent drop in gas prices, the price still wasn’t coming down quickly enough. “It’s happening. But it’s not happening fast enough,” Biden said, per PBS News. “We’ve made progress, but prices are still too high.”
The AAA auto club confirmed on Thursday that the national average price for a gallon of gas was $4.41. This is a reduction from summer, where prices exceeded $5 a gallon in some states.
Biden assured Americans that his administration is attempting to increase domestic oil production, while also asking oil companies to do their part in decreasing the price at the pump.
“First, we’re going to look at ways to increase oil production from the existing wells and permits that exist today,” Biden said. “The industry has more improved programs for production on federal lands than they can possibly use … they have more than they can use, so my message to these companies is use the permits or lose them.”
“Second, I’m telling the industry: you’re making record profits due to Putin’s war in Ukraine,” the president charged. “Use those profits to increase production and refining, don’t use those profits to buy back your stocks and dividends.”
Biden was joined at the meeting by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Brian Deese, the Director of the National Economic Council, and Cecilia Rouse, who is Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers. Additionally, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young and Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm were also present.
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