CNSNews.com has been a reliable arm of the Republican Party, especially when it comes to promoting GOP talking points about gas and oil -- for instance, pushing the fiction that building the Keystone XL pipeline would lower U.S. prices now and uncritically quoting oil and gas lobbying organizations to attack Biden energy policies that are seen is not sufficiently friendly to gas and oil and pretending that right-wing activists are "climate experts."
It has also labored to push the GOP narrative that Biden's policies are solely to blame for high gas prices -- despite not identifying any specific Biden policy that it can directly link to a specific increase in prices. A Feb. 14 article by editor Terry Jeffrey played built by association in declaring that "Between January 2021 and January 2022--President Joe Biden’s first year in office--the price of unleaded gasoline increased 40.8 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics." Jeffrey did the same thing in a March 10 article stating that "The price of gasoline increased 38.0 percent from February 2021 to February 2022, which marked President Joe Biden’s first full year in office, according to the Consumer Price Index numbers released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Despite all this implicit blame, Jeffrey cited no Biden policy as responsible for that increase in either article -- just like his counterparts at CNS owner the Media Research Center failed to do.
Although some gas stations in Los Angeles are charging more than $7 for one gallon of regular gasoline, the national average (on March 28) for a gallon of regular is $4.246, according to AAA.
California, a state run by a Democrat-dominant [sic] legislature and a Democrat [sic] governor, has a gas excise tax of 51.1 cents per gallon. The tax is scheduled to increase to 53.9 cents per gallon in July.
When President Donald Trump left office in January 2021, the national average price of a gallon of gasoline (all grades, formulations) was $2.464, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Chapman censored the fact that one main reason gas is always higher in California is because the state uses a special blend of gas not used elsewhere that is designed to reduce pollution. (A couple months later, CNS columnist Hans Bader hyped wildly overpriced gas at a single price-gouging station in California.)
Craig Bannister served as stenographer for the oil industry in order to attack Biden in a March 31 article:
After President Joe Biden delivered a speech Thursday outlining his plan to reduce gas prices, energy groups called the plan short-sighted and said Biden’s speech was a desperate attempt to shift blame away from the administration.
“The American people deserve real solutions,” American Petroleum (API) President Mike Sommers said in a statement, criticizing Biden for releasing oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), rather than addressing the fundamental forces causing gas prices to skyrocket:
“There are many factors behind rising energy costs, from geopolitical volatility and supply chain constraints to policy uncertainty, and the American people deserve real solutions.
In a statement to CNSNews.com, Western Energy Alliance (WEA) President Kathleen Sgamma said that Biden’s speech is evidence that the administration is panicking because Americans realize the president’s policies are to blame for skyrocketing gas prices:
The same day, Melanie Arter complained about Biden in an article headlined "Biden’s Plan to Reduce Gas Prices Singles Out Oil Companies Who Don’t Ramp Up Oil Production."
Jeffrey returned for an April 12 article hyping that "The price of gasoline rose by 48.0 percent from March 2021 to March 2022, according to numbers released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics." He didn't mention Biden by name, but the implication was there in the accompanying photo of Biden shaking hands with Russia's Vladimir Putin.
A May 9 article by Chapman hyped a biased poll from Rasmussen Reports and the right-wing Heartland Institute claiming that "52% of voters want Congress and President Joe Biden to focus on expanded oil and gas drilling while only 34% want them to focus on battling climate change."
In a June 14 article, Bannister complained that "Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is the sole reason that gas prices are up, President Joe Biden claimed Tuesday," adding that "As president, Biden has taken steps to thwart domestic oil production, such as canceling the Keystone XL pipeline and ending the sale of new oil leases" but not offering any evidence that any of those are to blame for gas price increases.
Susan Jones served up a June 22 complaint that Biden wants a gas tax holiday and the fact sheet the White House issued in support of one:
Notably, the fact sheet specifically mentions/blames "Putin" for gasoline price hikes four times, neglecting to mention that gasoline prices began rising as soon as Biden took office -- shutting down the Keystone Pipeline, canceling oil and gas leases, and pressing ahead with his green energy plans.
Again, no proof was offered to link any of those actions with any specific increase in gas prices.
CNS was also cranking out the usual stenographical attacks from Republican members of Congress:
- Sen. Cruz: High Gas Prices Are the 'Intended Effect' of Biden's Green Energy Agenda
- Scalise: ‘If Anybody's Going to Be Sued for Gouging, It Should Be the Gouger-in-Chief,’ Who Caused Record Gas Prices
- Sen. Rick Scott: Biden Is Doing Everything He Can to Make Gas Prices Go Up
- Rep. Kat Cammack: ‘Nancy Pelosi Hasn’t Filled Up a Gas Tank in 20 Years, Let Alone Joe Biden’
- Rep. Scalise: When It Comes to High Gas Prices, Pres. Biden Is ‘Throwing Spaghetti at the Walls, But Nobody Is Buying It’
These were all presented without criticism or allowing the White House to respond, let alone any fact-checking.
CNS' opinion side (well, the opinion side explicitly labeled as such) was busy as well. For instance, a June 10 column by Gary Bauer ranted:
June 9, 2022 – a day that will live in infamy. That’s the day that the national average for gasoline officially broke $5.00 a gallon. And, yes, Joe Biden did that!
But here’s what you must understand and what you must help your friends and family members to understand: Your pain at the pump isn’t an accident. It’s all part of Joe Biden’s plan.
High energy prices are the predictable, desired, and deliberate result of the Democrat jihad against the American energy industry. They are an essential element of their “climate change” agenda. But don't take my word for it. The left has been very open about it.
But like the other CNS writers, Bauer failed to explain how a specific Biden policy resulted in a specific increase in gas prices. And the role of Russia -- whose supply of oil Biden cut off after that country's invasion of Ukraine, causing prices to spike -- was completely censored.