WaPo: Talk we must about the DCCC's laughably deceptive gas-price propaganda

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

Give Philip Bump credit for exposing the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s ridiculously incompetent propaganda attempt here. But let’s face it … anyone dumb enough to be fooled by this graph should have their assets handled by a receiver, and possibly shouldn’t be driving in the first place.

The rest of us learned to check the Y-axis and X-axis first:

Presumably, the DCCC wants everyone to recognize the impact of Joe Biden’s release of 50 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. And that impact was a decline in average gas prices of, um … a whopping two cents over two weeks. It’s a savings of 0.994%! Woo-hoo! 

Color Bump — and every other sentient being — unimpressed:

Were that axis on the left a scale from zero to $4 a gallon, that decrease would be remarkable. Nearly free gas! Certainly something worth hyping.

But the axis does not use the scale. Instead, the line drops from about $3.40 to about $3.38, as marked on the y-axis — or, in layman’s terms, a decline of two cents. And since we’re talking about two cents out of nearly four dollars, that graph depicts a drop in the price of gas of just under 1 percent of the cost.

Since Biden took office, the price of gas has risen more than a dollar on this same measure.

Of course, much of that is unrelated to Biden and his policies, as Biden and his allies would normally be quick to point out. Now, though, the DCCC wants to not only give Biden credit for a decline in the price of gas, they want to give him credit for a tiny decline in the price of gas. A decline that isn’t even the largest decline we’ve seen this year; over a similar period in August, the price of gas dropped more than 1 percent, more than three cents.

As Bump points out, a proper graph of the same price data over time reveals a much clearer view of the price history. Bump has a more honest chart for this year that shows gas prices going up a full dollar before this two-cent retreat. Let’s look at the full historical record at the Energy Information Agency on weekly gas and diesel prices since 1995 instead, however. And look what that reveals:

Bump’s chart is perfectly valid for this exercise in exposing the DCCC’s dishonesty in ignoring Biden’s entire term in office to focus on only a two-week period. However, this larger-scope chart shows how much more dramatically Biden has impacted gas prices through his policies — a point conceded by the DCCC in its own insipid and thoroughly dishonest claim. Gas prices have skyrocketed not just back to pre-pandemic levels but well past the pre-pandemic cost level. The four years previous to Biden had a roaring economy, job expansion, lots of consumer demand, and yet the price only ever got up to $3 a gallon, and then only briefly.

Note too where Biden’s gas prices now line up. Remember when Barack Obama and Joe Biden insisted that we couldn’t drill our way out of $4/gallon gas? Well, it certainly looks as though we did. And while we haven’t yet scaled down drilling in the US, Biden has issued enough executive orders and policy declarations to make it clear that’s the direction he wants to take the US, and futures prices have reacted rationally.

That’s the incline that Democrats are desperate to hide. Does the DCCC really think voters are this stupid? Yes, they do. Are they that stupid? I guess we’ll find out next November, assuming that voters have enough $5/gallon gas in their tank to get to the voting precincts.