That report card from the Department of Energy is starting to look pretty darned good, eh? Three weeks ago, Energy Secretary Steven Chu gave himself an A-minus for his stewardship of taxpayer money, and shortly afterward, the GAO gave the DoE an 85% fail rate in handling the Loan Guarantee Program. Chu came back to Capitol Hill today to discuss energy policy and stood by his self-assigned A-minus, and gave himself an even better grade on controlling gas prices:
Energy Secretary Steven Chu told a House panel Tuesday that he’d give himself top marks when asked to grade his policies’ effects on energy prices. Rep. Darrell Issa, the chairman of the House committee on Oversight and Government Reform, asked President Obama’s top energy official if he’d grade himself with an “A minus” on “controlling the cost of gasoline at the pump.”
Chu responded by saying he’d give himself a better grade than that.
“The tools we have at our disposal are limited, but I would I say I would give myself a little higher in that since I became Secretary of Energy, I’ve been doing everything I can to get long-term solutions,” Chu said.
Talk about grade inflation. ABC News reported last night that gas prices have hit an all-time high for the month of March, although ABC claims that it may have peaked:
The average price of a gallon of regular is now $3.87, the highest recorded price in March. The average price is up nearly 4 cents from a week ago, and over 30 cents from a year ago, according to the Department of Energy, as more drivers face gas prices of $4 a gallon or more across the country.
Last week, the average gas price was $3.83 a gallon, the previous record according to data going back to 1990.
What led to the conclusion that prices may start coming down? One refinery has restarted production, and Saudi Arabia might make up for lost production in crude if Iran stops exporting oil. Those are mighty slender reeds on which to rest hope for a spring decline in gas prices.
If you’re wondering what the Obama administration record on gas prices really is, here’s the trend on average weekly national prices per gallon from the EIA:
The only way that looks like an A is if you intend to drive prices higher — say, to European levels. But that’s not policy … anymore … trust him on that.