Biden’s Price Hike Preceded ‘Putin’s Price Hike’

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

(The opinions expressed in guest op-eds are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of

For the past few weeks, President Biden and many on the left, including most of the mainstream media, have claimed that sky-high prices at the pump are solely due to Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.


In fact, the Biden administration, in coordination with the legacy media, has coined the term “Putin’s Price Hike” in an attempt to convince Americans that the reason gas prices are hovering near all-time highs is uniquely due to the Russian foray into Ukraine.

For instance, on March 31, Biden declared:

“Americans face rising prices at the pump because of Putin’s Price Hike. Since Putin accelerated his military build-up around Ukraine, gas prices have increased by nearly a dollar per gallon. Because of Putin’s war of choice, less oil is getting to market, and the reduction in supply is raising prices at the pump for Americans.”

Of course, the “Putin’s Price Hike” talking point has been echoed by several legacy media outlets, including The New York Times, among many more.

However, when one puts aside the talking points and examines the data, it is clear that prices at the pump began increasing well before Vladimir Putin began amassing troops on the Ukrainian border. Moreover, it is becoming abundantly clear that the real driver of America’s rising prices at the pump has little to do with Putin’s war in Ukraine but much to do with Biden’s war on American energy production.

For starters, we would be remiss to forget that Biden admitted on several occasions during his 2020 presidential campaign that he would curtail domestic fossil fuel production. Biden even admitted, “We are going to get rid of fossil fuels,” while on the campaign stump in February 2020.


When Biden entered the Oval Office on January 20, 2021, he immediately fulfilled his campaign promises to stifle U.S. energy production. On day one, he canceled the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have transported 900,000 barrels of oil from Canada to U.S. refineries in Texas and Louisiana.

According to Biden, he canceled Keystone XL because:

“The United States must be in a position to exercise vigorous climate leadership in order to achieve a significant increase in global climate action and put the world on a sustainable climate pathway. Leaving the Keystone XL pipeline permit in place would not be consistent with my administration’s economic and climate imperatives.”

Soon after Biden canceled the Keystone XL pipeline, he unleashed a torrent of other executive actions specifically designed to stifle U.S. energy production by banning new leases for oil and natural gas on federal lands, blocking drilling in the oil-rich ANWR, increasing EPA methane emission regulations, hiking the social cost of carbon tax, and making it more difficult to invest in fossil-fuel operations via the administration’s support of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) metrics.

Throughout President Trump’s four years in office, the average price for a gallon of regular gasoline never surpassed $3.00. In fact, in the months leading up to the 2020 presidential election, the average price for a gallon of regular gasoline remained near $2.20.


However, that all changed as soon as it became clear that Biden would become the 46th president of the United States in mid-November. Since then, the average price for a gallon of regular gas has increased every single month, reaching an all-time high of $4.32 in March 2022.

Coincidentally, during most of the Obama administration, the average price for a gallon of regular gasoline exceeded $3.00 as well.

Perhaps this is because the Obama and Biden administrations, unlike the Trump administration, both embraced policies meant to hinder domestic production of oil and natural gas.

The next time you hear White House propaganda blaming rapidly rising prices at the pump on Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine, remember that despite this talking point, Biden’s anti-energy policies are the reason it costs more than ever to fill your gas tank, if you can even afford to do so.

Chris Talgo ([email protected]) is senior editor at The Heartland Institute.


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