Signs of inflation have sparked nationwide economic concerns in recent weeks as many consumers express particular concern about the rising cost of gas.
For her part, however, White House press secretary Jen Psaki asserted that fuel prices are roughly the same as they were under former President Donald Trump and that Americans are “paying less in real terms for gas” than the average of the past 15 years. Breitbart’s fact-checker rated her claims “mostly false.”
In an apparent attempt to spin the otherwise bad news of price increases, Psaki used what Breitbart called “inflationary clarifiers” to avoid discussing the real cost to motorists.
The outlet found that over the past 15 years, the average cost of gas was $2.813 per gallon. According to current data, that makes today’s price roughly 7.3% higher than average.
As for her claim about current prices compared to Trump’s time in the White House during 2018 and 2019, the numbers show Psaki’s assessment was close but misleading. Records indicate the current price of gas is higher than it was in at least the past four years.
While some Biden supporters might nitpick the fact-check given that the numbers are relatively close, many conservatives are sure to speculate that if the roles were reversed, Trump and his press secretary would be labeled liars by critics in the mainstream media and Democratic Party.
Psaki was pressed on the issue and attempted to employ more political spin by inferring that the latest increase in gas prices was not out of the ordinary.
“As demand drastically dipped”
“While prices have increased from the lows last year — as demand drastically dipped — prices at just about $3 per gallon are still well in line with what they’ve been in recent decades,” she said.
She went on to mention the recent shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline, which went offline in response to a ransomware attack.
“This is due in part to the administration’s aggressive, whole-of-government response to the unprecedented shutdown of that pipeline,” Psaki said, claiming that the Biden administration helped stabilize prices during that period.
Amid easing COVID-19 restrictions and approaching warm weather, Americans are sure to be ready to hit the road this summer.
Unfortunately, rising gas prices could pump the brakes on such plans for many families, adding to the existing pressure on the Biden administration to justify its policies.