Facebook posts: “Gas prices to be WAY higher in 2008, under REPUBLICAN chairman George W. Bush.”

PolitiFact ruling: half True

Here"s why: chairman Joe Biden has challenged a most criticism indigenous Republicans because that the climb in petrol prices because he took office. But the left-wing social media account occupy Democrats insurance claims that under one Republican president, prices were much higher.

You are watching: Gas price when bush left office

"You won’t watch THIS on Fox ‘News’: Gas prices to be WAY greater in 2008, under REPUBLICAN president George W. Bush," occupy Democrats wrote on Facebook. The post included photos of two gas station price signs, labeling 2008 and 2021. 

The write-up was flagged as component of Facebook’s initiatives to combat false news and also misinformation top top its News Feed.

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We’re not certain where or once the image of gas indicators were taken, but they perform accurately reflect the petrol prices the were in impact at the time. 

Statistics indigenous the U.S. Energy Information Administration back up the claim about prices. Throughout the previous 20 years, the highest gas prices developed in July 2008, during the bush administration. 

But the statement leaves out vital context. Some of the shortest prices that the past two decades also developed during the shrub administration, which had both the post-9/11 financial slowdown and also the 2008 wall surface Street crash and financial crisis. 

Indeed, gas prices have fluctuated in ~ and throughout administrations, with small correlation to which president or party is in power. Similar to most things, the price of petrol is determined not by the president, however rather through the state that the economy and the balance that supply and demand. Following our inquiries, occupy Democrats readjusted its article to reflect this.

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Occupy democrats cofounder Rafael Rivero called PolitiFact that the point of that is original claim was to to mark the context that it claims was absent from critiques the the Biden administration. The reality that prices were at historical highs during the Bush management "is conveniently ignored by the chorus that Fox News anchors blaming Biden for today’s rising prices," Rivero said.

Today’s gas prices are approximately $3.32 a gallon, increase from $2.37 when Biden take it office, follow to the energy Information Administration. That’s still well off the top of about $4.11 in July 2008.

But Bush’s term additionally included two significant economic shocks that sent gasoline prices tumbling. The first was the 9/11 assaults in 2001. Through the finish of the year, gas prices were roughly $1.07. The various other was the 2008 mortgage dilemm and wall surface Street collapse, near the finish of his second term. By the time Obama take it over, gas prices were under to around $1.83.

The intersection that supply and also demand

While the health and wellness of the economic situation influences the need side that the price balance, global supply is largely managed by the Organization that the Petroleum Exporting Countries, stated Patrick De Haan, head that petroleum evaluation at GasBuddy. 

"OPEC make the efforts to control the price of oil through either boosting or decreasing production to keep the price that oil stable," De Haan said. 

In 2001, the mean price the oil set by OPEC countries was around $23 a barrel. That low price incentivized much more consumption, and an international demand started to rise during Bush’s second term, De Haan said.

"People became so accustomed come low energy that they made permanent decisions based upon that. Human being were driving large cars, human being were living hours away native (work) in part cases," De Haan said.

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By the center of 2008, USA Today reported, oil price spiked past $147 a barrel as result of rising tensions between the U.S. And also Iran, and also supply interruptions in Nigeria and also Brazil. That’s once prices hit your peak above $4 a gallon. 

Then come the crash, followed by one more recovery under president Barack Obama’s administration that sent out prices ago toward the $4 note in 2011 and 2012. 

In November 2014, in stimulate to complete with production in other nations like the U.S., OPEC changed that is policy to produce as lot oil as feasible and flood the market, i m sorry led to really low prices. Those low prices continued into the trumped years, till OPEC when again changed its plan to raise prices.

Why gas prices space up now 

Then in march 2020, the pandemic hit and also oil need plummeted.

Under president Donald Trump, prices ranged from about $1.80 (near in ~ the start of the pandemic) come $2.90.

"Because Americans remained home, the price of oil plummeted into negative territory because that the first time ever," De Haan said, introduce to the price of crude oil futures contracts. "Demand for gasoline was under 60%, and together with it, the price that oil crashed."

That caused job cuts in the oil industry and also a decrease in production. But demand recovered quickly due to the fact that of optimism surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine, De Haan said, and producers haven’t been able to ramp back up as quickly, top to one more spike in prices that continues today. 

"Was that Trump’s fault? No. Was the Biden’s fault? No," De Haan said. "The vaccines held the key to boost in demand." 

After PolitiFact’s inquiry, accounting Democrats modified its post to add that point: "The truth is that presidents have small if any type of effect top top gas prices, which room dependent top top the price of rudely oil, i m sorry is established by worldwide supply and also demand. High gas price in 2008 weren"t yes, really Bush"s fault, just like rising prices this day aren"t Biden"s fault."

Our ruling

An accounting Democrats Facebook post said petrol prices to be "way higher" under Republican president George W. Shrub than this particular day under president Joe Biden. 

Prices go peak during the bush administration, but they likewise were very low at various other points throughout his presidency. 

More broadly, professionals say, motions in gas price have small to perform with who president. Rather, lock reflect the balance between an international supply and demand, and the global supply is largely identified by OPEC.

Occupy democrats modified its article to add context, yet our rating is based upon the original post.

We price this claim half True.

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PolitiFact senior correspondent louis Jacobson added to this report.


Occupy Democrats, Facebook post, Oct. 20, 2021

U.S. Energy Information Administration, Weekly U.S. Consistent All Formulations retail Gas Prices, accessed Oct. 21, 2021

Organization the the Petroleum Exporting Countries, accessed Oct. 21, 2021

Occupy Democrats, Facebook post, Oct. 20, 2021

U.S. Power Information Administration, Weekly U.S. Regular All Formulations retail Gas Prices, accessed Oct. 21, 2021

Organization that the Petroleum Exporting Countries, accessed Oct. 21, 2021

Statista, Average yearly OPEC rudely oil price from 1960 to 2021, accessed Oct. 22, 2021

USA Today, Oil sets brand-new trading record over $147 a barrel, Oct. 22, 2021

Vox, Oil prices keep plummeting together OPEC starts a price war through the US, Nov. 28, 2014

Bloomberg, Oil Rises for 3rd Straight main on Covid-19 Vaccine Optimism, Nov. 19, 2020

Phone interview v Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, Oct. 21, 2021

Email interview with Rafael Rivero, co-founder of accounting Democrats, Oct. 21, 2021