After negotiating a tricky stretch of road, the Obama campaign may be easing into the straightaway in the gas-driven presidential race.
News on Monday of a delay in the planned closure of the largest refinery on the East Coast could mean an end to skyrocketing gas prices. And that would effectively take the wind out of a forceful Republican line of attack — that the president is to be blamed for $4 a gallon gas, arguably the most visible price in the American economy today.
The narrative was working against the president, who currently gets some of his lowest poll marks for his handling of energy prices, even though the causes of higher prices are largely beyond his control. Even so, we shouldn’t expect the Republicans to simply drop the rhetoric.
“Until we are at the point where people don’t feel like they’re squeezing their entire paychecks into the gas tank, it’s an issue that Republicans are going to keep talking about,” said a Senate Republican aide.