OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
President Joe Biden has appeared to praise higher gas prices as a sign that the United States is moving toward cleaner energy.
During a joint press conference with Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on Monday, the president appeared to praise the rise in the price of gas.
“Mr. President, I wanted to ask you about the economy. During your trip here to Asia, you’ve promoted investments by Samsung and Hyundai. But back home in the United States, Americans are dealing with record-high inflation. The Fed has raised interest rates to try to address those issues. And there are also just enormously high gas prices,” a reporter said to the president.
“Given the cross-currents of the economy right now — the war in Ukraine, the China lockdowns that we’ve seen — should Americans be prepared for a recession? In your view, is a recession in the United States inevitable?” the reporter said.
“Look, you’re talking about the significant progress we’ve made in making sure we don’t have supply chain backups — about the 8,000 jobs that Hyundai is going to be bringing to Georgia; 3,000 jobs to Texas from Samsung, $17 billion investment; Toyota, 1,700 jobs in North Carolina on battery technology; the situation where we — at — we’ve created over 8 million new jobs, where unemployment is down to 3.6 percent, and so on and so forth — as if they’re a problem. Imagine where we’d be with Putin’s tax and the war in Ukraine had we not made that enormous progress,” the president said.
“Our GDP is going to grow faster than China’s for the first time in 40 years. Now, does that mean we don’t have problems? We do. We have problems that the rest of the world has, but less consequential than the rest of the world has because of our internal growth and strength,” he said before making the comments that stunned many.
“Here’s the situation. And when it comes to the gas prices, we’re going through an incredible transition that is taking place that, God willing, when it’s over, we’ll be stronger and the world will be stronger and less reliant on fossil fuels when this is over,” he said.
He went on to insist that he has helped.
“And what I’ve been able to do to keep it from getting even worse — and it’s bad. The price of gas at the pump is something that I told you — you heard me say before — it would be a matter of great discussion at my kitchen table when I was a kid growing up. It’s affecting a lot of families,” the president said.
“But we have released over two hundred and, I think, fifty-seven thousand — million barrels of oil, I should say. Us and the rest of the world we convinced to get involved. It’s helped, but it’s not been enough,” he said.
“We also find ourselves in a situation where we have food shortages — food shortages because of Ukraine. There are over — there are literally millions of bushels of oil — I mean, excuse me, of grain being held up in Ukraine that would fundamentally impact positively on the market in terms of bringing down food prices across the board,” he said.
Joe Biden: "When it comes to the gas prices, we're going through an INCREDIBLE transition" pic.twitter.com/8TGnc7vFa8
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) May 23, 2022
His comments were shredded on Twitter.
“Joe Biden is praising rising gas prices — chalking it up to the ‘incredible transition’ away from fossil fuels,” Sen. Marsha Blackburn said.
Joe Biden is praising rising gas prices — chalking it up to the “incredible transition” away from fossil fuels.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) May 24, 2022
“In Japan, President Biden said his record-high gas prices are part of an ‘incredible transition’ that will make America and the world better off. Biden is completely out of touch with everyday Americans,” Rep. Andy Biggs said.
In Japan, President Biden said his record-high gas prices are part of an “incredible transition” that will make America and the world better off.
Biden is completely out of touch with everyday Americans.
— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) May 24, 2022
“Soaring gas prices are not part of an ‘incredible transition’ as President Biden wants you to think, it’s a flat-out failure,” Rep. Scott Fitzgerald said.
Soaring gas prices are not part of an "incredible transition" as President Biden wants you to think, it's a flat-out failure.
— Rep. Scott Fitzgerald (@RepFitzgerald) May 24, 2022
After flying around on a 747 while taxpayers pay for his jet fuel, Joe Biden said, "When it comes to the gas prices, we're going through an incredible transition.”
It’s the most arrogant contempt for the working men and women in this country! pic.twitter.com/Mt6SdVsrZN
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) May 24, 2022
“After flying around on a 747 while taxpayers pay for his jet fuel, Joe Biden said, ‘When it comes to the gas prices, we’re going through an incredible transition.’ It’s the most arrogant contempt for the working men and women in this country!” Sen. Ted Cruz said.