Gas Prices Up, President Obama Down

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A man pumps gas in Manhattan at a BP mini-mart in early March. (AP)
A man pumps gas in Manhattan at a BP mini-mart in early March. (AP)

A New York Times/CBS poll shows that President Obama's approval rating has dropped nine points in the last month to 41 percent.

Jobs and the economy topped the list of concerns for respondents, despite strong job growth in the past three months.

But the poll also found that people thought the President could do more about the rising cost of gas, which is $3.83 nationally according to AAA.

The Washington Post tracked how people felt about gas prices and the President. The Post found that 71 percent of people said that the rising cost of gas is extremely/very important to them. Sixty-five percent said they disapproved of the President's handling of gas prices.

But experts told the Post that while Americans generally blame presidents for higher gas prices, it generally isn't their  fault:

"U.S. policy makes a difference, energy experts say, but with a long delay, whether it is a matter of drilling for more oil or increasing the fuel efficiency of the automobile fleet, which takes a decade or more to turn over."

The Post also reports that higher crude oil prices are the main reason behind the higher cost of gas, and that's driven by greater demand in Asia, Africa and South America:

"Today’s oil prices are the product of years and decades of exploration, automobile design and ingrained consumer habits combined with political events in places such as Sudan and Libya, anxiety about possible conflict with Iran, and the energy aftershocks of last year’s earthquake in Japan."


This segment aired on March 13, 2012.


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