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Fox Business Show Blames President Obama For High Gas Prices

Reported by Guest Blogger - April 24, 2011 -

By Brian

The first segment of today's Cavuto on Business featured a discussion about high gas prices with special focus on attacking President Obama’s efforts to investigate and root out fraud or manipulation in oil and gas markets. Host Neil Cavuto set the tone with this “fair and balanced” statement in his introduction: "The President's forming a task force to see if something sinister is going on. Now...come....onnnnn.” Cavuto just happened to call on panelist Charles Payne first and Payne just happened to opine that the spike in gas prices is all Obama’s fault.

But first, Cavuto got in another dig at Obama: “It gets folks off blaming the big guy for this, but maybe a 13% decline in Gulf production in just the last year is the bigger reason.”

Payne took it a step further by arguing that Obama is completely to blame for the higher costs. "You talk about deflecting blame… There's so many reasons the President should be looking in the mirror. Let's start with debt and deficits. Let's talk about the Fed printing money. Let's talk about all these other things." He said the President’s task force was a "disingenuous" effort. "’Us versus them, evil businesses, evil speculators, I get your back,’ but it's the President and his policies that are driving up the price of oil and gas," Payne sneered.

Panelist Charlie Gasparino said there was “no doubt” there’s some “criminality” “on the edges” but he concluded by throwing his hat in with the Fox News meme. "Is Obama demagoguing this issue? ...I think you have to say yes."

When Ben Stein said that speculation, not a shortage of oil, is causing higher prices, he quickly noted that speculating is “not criminal.” But apparently, Cavuto wanted to make sure nobody in the audience mistook that as a vote support for Obama. “I just want to be clear,” Cavuto jumped in, interrupting Stein. …(Speculation or not), you don’t find that to be worthy of a task force.” Not surprisingly, Stein agreed.

Panelist Adam Lashinsky defended Obama by strongly disagreeing that he's completely to blame. But first Lashinsky said, "I agree the President is demagoguing this issue." Calling Payne’s theory "preposterous.” Lashinsky added, “There's a few issues going on in the world right now that are driving up..."

Cavuto interrupted. "Charles must defend himself." Lashinsky later got time to complete his thought but he never got as much time to speak as Payne did.

Payne added a bit more to his attack on Obama: "The free falling dollar is the main reason. By the way, it's not just gas, it’s not just oil, it’s food. We’ve sparked revolutions around the world, because we’ve let the dollar collapse because we're not responsible with debt and deficits… According to the Department of Energy, refinery costs are almost 15% of the gallon of gas, up from 5% in November. We haven't allowed a refinery in this country in 2 or 3 decades. I’m telling you, It's administrative policies both for the oil company and with respect to the dollar that are killing us."

What a coincidence that the panelist who was most critical of Obama got the most time to speak.

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