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VICTOR JOECKS: The ‘green’ agenda runs on high gas prices

Democrats have a simple solution for the economic pain their policies have created: Be rich. This snide elitism was on full display over the past week.

Gasoline prices that once seemed only imaginable in California have come to Nevada. I saw a local station this week that was charging more than $5 a gallon. Paying $6 a gallon or more this summer is possible.

For many, the additional expense is burdensome. At one point, families may have had the financial buffer to absorb these costs. But after months of skyrocketing inflation, which just set another 40-year high, their incomes don’t go as far.

Fear not. The White House has a solution. Buy a Tesla. “Transforming our economy to run on electric vehicles, powered by clean energy, will mean that no one will have to worry about gas prices,” President Joe Biden tweeted Tuesday.

One problem. If you’re struggling to pay $5 a gallon for gas, you’re going to have a hard time affording an EV. The average price for a new electric vehicle was $64,700 in February, according to Kelley Blue Book. In contrast, the average price for a compact car was $26,200.

There’s a disparity with used cars, too. Recurrent, an electric vehicle research site, found the average price of a used EV was $39,600. The price of a used car with an internal combustion engine was $27,000.

Of all people, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg should be aware of these facts. That didn’t keep him from unloading this whopper on Monday. “Clean transportation can bring significant cost savings for the American people,” he said.

Subtext: If you were rich like me, you could have an EV. Then you wouldn’t be so stressed about high gasoline prices. What is wrong with you unsophisticated rednecks?

Democrats don’t mention it, but higher prices for gas and gasoline-powered cars is part of their “green” agenda. Biden set a goal of “net zero” carbon emissions by 2050. Absent a breakthrough in carbon capture, achieving that goal will require dramatically reducing oil production and usage in gasoline-powered cars.

“I guarantee you, I guarantee you we’re going to end fossil fuel,” Biden said as a candidate. After he was sworn in, BBC reported Biden “has gone to war against coal, oil and natural gas with a decisiveness that has caught everyone by surprise.”

Biden can’t hold off the Taliban, but just look at how he beat down U.S. oil production.

It’s not just Biden. Last October, some House Democrats browbeat oil executives in an attempt to lower their production of fossil fuels. “Will Shell commit to reducing gas production as part of its emissions reductions plans?” Rep. Robin Kelly, D-Ill., asked.

Nevada Democrats have bought into this, too. In 2019, Gov. Steve Sisolak joined the state-equivalent of the Paris agreement. He signed a bill establishing a goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.

That bill required a report detailing options to reduce emissions. Here are some suggestions the report offered for transportation: Require all light-duty vehicles to be electric by 2035, reduce vehicle miles traveled through strategies such as “increasing fuel taxes” and require HOV lanes, “rather than general purpose lanes, for any proposed highway expansion.”

Under Sisolak, Nevada’s transportation plan is to create higher vehicle prices, higher gasoline prices and more traffic congestion.

To meet their climate goals, Democrat politicians must drive ordinary Americans out of fossil-fuel powered vehicles. Exceptions will undoubtedly be made for the special people, like our SUV-driving governor. Higher prices at the pump are the best way to make that happen.

If only you were wealthy like them, you wouldn’t have a thing to worry about.

Contact Victor Joecks at vjoecks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4698. Follow @victorjoecks on Twitter.

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