“The median price is $ 4. And in many places, it’s $ 5. I know the oil industry said that one of the reasons for the price increase was that it had to slow down production because it had to do maintenance, ”said the representative. Karen Bass told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union”. “We need to reduce the price of gas in California. ”
When asked if Tapper would support the Biden administration in tapping into the country’s strategic oil reserve in an attempt to bring prices down, the California Democrat replied, “Well, I’m not sure. I mean, this is definitely one thing that could be finished. ”
“But I’m a little more concerned that oil producers can get back online,” she added. “So I hope that we will see some reduction and that the administration will not have to intervene. “
CNN reported on Friday that gas prices in California reached an average price of $ 4.658 that day, about a penny lower than the highest recorded average price of $ 4.671 for regular gasoline set in October 2012. , according to AAA. The prices mean residents of the state are seeing the highest gas prices in the country, with the national average edging down to $ 3,416 on Friday.
In a separate interview with Tapper on Sunday, Brian Deese, the director of the National Economic Council, did not respond directly to whether President Joe Biden was ready to open the United States Strategic Petroleum Reserve or halt gas exports and of oil to cope with rising crude oil prices. .
“We are very determined to do everything possible to ensure that American consumers do not bear the brunt of high gas prices and volatile energy prices and the President has made it clear that all options are on the table.” , did he declare.
Tapping into the SPR’s supply, which is designed to shield the country from a major disruption in oil supplies, would likely provide only modest and temporary relief from rising prices at the pump.
Last week, Biden refrained from ordering an SPR release after the OPEC + coalition rejected calls by the United States and other major oil-consuming countries to increase production more than expected in December.