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Santorum Has Hit Upon Our Winning 2012 Narrative: High Gas Prices Are Keeping This Country Mired In Economic Malaise

On Monday, Rick Santorum laid out a case that high gas prices caused the Great Recession – essentially pointing out that high gas prices kept many Americans from paying their bills, thus resulting in the credit nightmare that ensued.

Here’s the problem with his argument…and the opportunity that is presented by virtue of his willingness to hammer Obama:

This isn’t 2008. People are less concerned with what caused the 2008 economic meltdown than they are with why we haven’t climbed out of it and how we can fix what ails us.

This is where we have a golden opportunity, regardless of who emerges from the primaries, to seal Obama’s fate once and for all.

There are two primary factors contributing to high gas prices – and both are derived directly from Barack Obama’s policy briefcase:

1. Bloated budgets, complete with $1-1.5 trillion yearly deficits, have so devalued our dollar that oil was hovering around $100/barrel long before Iran began beating its chest and making threats. Oil is priced in dollars; therefore, when it is weakened (as it has been during the Obama presidency), the cost of oil rises dramatically. But don’t take my word for it. Here are two statements from MSNBC (leftist) and Forbes attesting to the same correlation/causation:

Schoen (MSNBC)

Weak dollar. This has an indirect impact, but since oil is priced in dollars, as the value of the dollar falls, the price of oil in dollars goes up. Over the last five years, the dollar has fallen by 33 percent against the euro. If that keeps up, the upward pressure on oil prices will remain.

Woodhill (Forbes)

During the 1970s, the toxic combination of a weak dollar, high tax rates, and onerous regulations introduced a new word into America’s economic vocabulary: stagflation. Reaganomics banished this word to the history books. Now, President Obama and Fed Chairman Bernanke are teaming up to give stagflation another try.

Enter the GOP candidate for the presidency. Obama is and should be the sole beneficiary of criticism for the budgets he submitted to congress and the deficits that accompanied them. Explain in plain terms how devaluing the dollar led to $4-5/gallon gas – then watch the voting public turn on Obama so fast it will make his head spin.

2. Obama’s refusal to increase domestic oil production is a two-tiered monster. It not only artificially decreased the supply of oil, but it choked off revenue from this nation’s #2 revenue producer: oil contract royalties (#1 is the income tax). So when he whines about the wealthy not paying their fair share, how about we point out to the voting public the fact that HE has deprived the country of much needed revenue…FROM THE OIL INDUSTRY…by virtue of his refusal to issue more oil leases? That should go mighty well with his nonsensical class warfare arguments.

Of course, these issues matter not if our own candidates don’t trumpet them DAY AFTER DAY until the public is properly educated on Obama’s failures and how responsible he is for the fact that we haven’t recovered sufficiently from this recession. Think the American public won’t make the connection? Try reminding them how nice it was to only put $1.13/gallon into their gas tanks during the 1990s…and how little they can spend and save now that it is $4-5/gallon. They’ll get an education in what drives or suppresses consumer demand before our very eyes…and they’ll rightfully blame Obama for his role in the mess.

I’m for a good old fashioned social issues debate, but perhaps in 2012, we could argue issues that matter the most to the American public…and argue them with the facts that pound the nail in Obama’s reelection coffin.

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