Gas Prices Provide Fodder for GOP against Obama

The problem with  making substantive political arguments is that nuance often proves difficult to explain to broad audiences.

“The economy” is not an issue because “the economy” is so complex, it’s a college major. In other words, it takes four years just to have an undergraduate understanding of market systems and forces.

Even then, that might not be enough to help you make an informed decision on policy formation.

You see mud-slinging and heinously partisan advertisement in these races because nuanced arguments are so difficult to make. It’s easy to just say, “Well, this guy is a bad guy and here’s why.”

On the other hand, as a campaign moves through, issues do tend to decompress. In the case of the GOP against Obama – truly that’s what this is, regardless of the Republican candidate – “the economy” has always been the target for Republicans.

As this campaign has progressed, there have been tangential topics brought to the fore and the latest is, according to insiders, gas prices.

It’s a convenient straw man for Republicans because, frankly, no politician has any intention of ever rolling back gas subsidies no matter how many times they say they will.

Furthermore, Obama has said, on a number of occasions, he’d like to see gas prices rise because it might spur support for renewable energy.

Obama’s connection to Solyndra and the failure of his “green jobs” policies will be an easy targets for Republicans looking to tie the failures of the Obama administration to the rising costs of energy.

There’s no dodging the billions spent on renewable energy that hasn’t produced significant gains in job creation.

When it comes to empty promises, Obama’s energy policy has been the hollowest.

Best of all, there’s literally nothing President Obama can do between now and the election to change this.

No policy will net gains fast enough to make a difference in his record, particularly when gas prices are always worst in the summer. Once again, projections are for $4 a gallon gasoline just about everywhere this summer and with little hope of respite.

Rolling back the subsidies on big oil, something that actually might work when it comes to spurring clean energy creation, would create a national panic. Gas prices would spike, the cost of literally everything we buy would shoot through the roof and there’d be people on Pennsylvania Avenue with torches and pitchforks.

The president knows that. Every politician does. They have to.

We’d need new transportation infrastructure already in place, not to mention clean energy alternatives for our homes and businesses.

Solyndra is a cautionary tale for politicians in Congress who know that if they make investments in green energy that don’t produce results, it’s the rope their opponents will use to hang them.

The money Democrats have put into green energy hasn’t produced results.

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