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April 26th, 2011
06:00 PM ET

Bigger issue for you if election were today: gas prices or Middle East?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Violence rages on in the Middle East. Fighting continues in Libya. In Syria, a human rights group reports that more than 400 people have been killed over the past few weeks.

We're still engaged in Iraq, still fighting in Afghanistan. Now everybody is wondering what to do about Syria. At last word President Obama was "considering sanctions." Whatever that means. His strategy and leadership skills are increasingly being called into question, and the chorus of critics is getting louder.

While the problems continue to multiply in the Middle East, many Americans are just trying to figure out how they're going to pay for their daily commute to work. Gas prices are off the charts with predictions now that they could hit $6 a gallon this summer. We're already about 25 cents away from the record high reached in July of 2008. Rising oil prices and the falling value of the dollar don't offer much hope for relief anytime soon.

The president's been talking a lot about gas prices lately, working the topic into speeches in Virginia, Nevada and California last week. He also announced a task force led by Attorney General Eric Holder to seek out fraud and manipulation of gas prices. That's what the politicians do every time gas prices spike. They start looking for an imaginary boogey man.

Today the President wrote a letter to Congressional leaders urging them to repeal preferential tax laws for the oil companies. That'll happen.

House Republicans have announced they are planning to hold hearings and will introduce legislation in response to high gas prices. In an interview with ABC News yesterday, House Speaker John Boehner said high gas prices could cost President Obama re-election.

He might be right. The president's approval ratings are near an all time low.

Here’s my question to you: If the election was held today, which would be the bigger issue for you, gas prices or the Middle East?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Don:
The Middle East. If that area can be settled down with countries under governments that are at least tolerant of others and open to compromise, then gas prices will take care of themselves.

Vince in Dallas, Georgia:
The two go hand and hand. You can't be concerned about gas prices without being concerned with what's going on in the Middle East. Once this movement sweeping the Middle East hits Saudi Arabia, $4.00 a gallon will seem like a bargain. Let's get focused on those renewable energy sources.

David in Alexandria, Virginia:
Gas prices, by far. Not because of the financial pain, but because of the lack of presidential leadership for the past 2.5 years in coming up with a strategy which will lead to a solution. If he can't muster the leadership skills to recognize energy as a pivotal problem for us and come up with something better than the "hope and change" blather of two years ago, our President just doesn't get it. And he should not get four more years of on-the-job training to learn at our expense.

Anthony in Syracuse, New York:
For me the bigger issue would be the Middle East. Gas prices were this high a few years ago and we survived. The people of Syria, Bahrain and other Arab countries are being killed by their own governments and they have little means of defending themselves. It'll be pathetic if the United States stands by just like we did for Rwanda, and then declares "never again" after it's far too late.

W. in Pennsylvania:
Jack, we love free markets till the supply/demand ratio causes our oil addiction to cost us money. We do not yet pay what the rest of the world already pays for gasoline and diesel fuel. Why are we involved in three wars against countries that have not harmed us and have no capacity to harm us? They just have resources our corporations want.

Marlene:
Given just these two choices, I'd pick gas prices. But the real issue for the 2012 election should only be one: Jobs.


Filed under: Elections • Gas Prices • Middle East
soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Larry Feierstein

    Thats easy Jack. If you solve the Middle East (not in our lifetime) gas prices plummet. That is why we spend so much time, money and energy in countries we really don't want anything to do with. If there was no oil in Saudi Arabia, Iraq, etc would we even care? Until we get off oil we will never get out of the Middle East. A shame.

    April 26, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
  2. Jan

    I'm not sure why you are treating these two as independent issues. Gas prices are almost completely dependent on the situation in the Middle East and we can't expect better gas prices without a stable Middle East. Putting our selfish needs aside, I hope that the people in the region and can achieve democracy without more bloodshed...

    April 26, 2011 at 1:55 pm |
  3. B.J., Quincy, Il

    Gas prices is the bigger issue. We'd be better of it would seem, to let them kill each other of, there would be less for us to contend with.

    April 26, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  4. Balboa from Huntsville, Alabama

    The Middle East would be the biggest issue in my opinion because the troops should come home and prepare for a real war that would involve the United States getting attacked symbolic of December 7, 1941. That is how I believe the United States War Policy should be even after this pattern.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
  5. Bill

    For me the Middle East is the issue.

    The price of gas is an easy prediction: Up and downs, ever upward. Unavoidable, until synthetic oil becomes more economical. We should not fight wars for oil, and that includes the first Iraq war.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  6. Herman Portland OR

    Jack,
    Both are equally major factors in an election. The reason for the increased prices in the oil industry is the Middle East unrest. Any one including our current President should make both these issues a top priority as well as jobs for Americans. The American people deserve less political hot air and more leadership and action.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  7. Loren, Chicago

    Can't have one without the other. Gas prices are inexorably tied to politics in the Middle East, the Oil Cartel depends on the ability of the Sheikdoms to maintain their power and anything that threatens will have an effect on price.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  8. Pete in Georgia

    Perhaps some day we will have a sane and decent administration in Washington that will see how destructive our meddling in the Middle East is to our budget, economy, and our country in general.
    It is nothing but foolish egotistical business contrived and conducted by just a handful of misguided souls.
    Pure insanity.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  9. Patsy

    Jack, I would say the Middle East because supposedly the gas
    prices are rising for fear of what is, or might, happen over there.
    I think it is more greedy speculation than anything else. Also,
    Trump would just go to Lybia and "take their oil, then pay the
    Lybians enough money to live well". That solution is not what
    America is about, besides the fact that the world market sets
    the prices so I don't really know how he would pull that off.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  10. Peter

    There are hundreds of more important election issues than the middle east. It's time to start making the U.S. the priority and fix the problems here. Unemployment, deficit, debt, health care. No I won't list the others but national issues are more important than international issues

    April 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  11. John from Alabama

    Jack: The bigger issue is the deficit and the value of the dollar. A weak dollar causes gasoline prices to be high. We can strenthen the dollar by reducing the deficit. To reduce the deficit do away with all taxcuts for Americans or at least go back to the Clinton Era tax rate.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  12. Tom in Desoto, TX

    Gas prices will go down after Wall Streets finds another market to manipulate. The Mid -East has been a problem since the beginning of time. The Middle East is a world problem. Many countries would love to be paying ONLY $4 per gallon

    April 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  13. Toni

    We need to help the Middle East but we don't need to put this all on the backs of the middle class and the poor here in America. We want them to be independent from these terrible leaders but I'm not sure if we (middle class and poor) can wait for this war to be over with. I would like to see them all under Leaders that help their people to be free and live the life that they deserve. I don't want to be selfish but right now my family is struggling to stay within our paycheck. So I will have to say Gas Prices is very important to my next vote.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  14. pad

    CHANGE? not that i can see same as last election only more national debt

    April 26, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  15. Jane (Minnesota)

    Gas prices because Washington is not willing to step in an regulate the Wall Street speculators. They won't be satisified until they damage the weak recovery. By the way, they had also better focus on growing manufacturing in this country instead of supporting all the outsourcing that has occurred during the previous administration and into this one. Where are the jobs, Mr. Speaker and Mr. President????? Both parties are to blame for the mess because they are so beholding to the lobbyists that fund their campaigns.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  16. david seattle,wa

    niether, i dont have an opposition party in this 2 party monopoly.... I dont want fools in u.s. claiming they can get us off foriegn controlled oil , when we allow foreign corporations access to alaska and north dakota who are threatening food supplies and water supplies... as far as the middle east, we still have strategic nukes to wipe out the confessed hate who will never go legit.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  17. chris

    no brainer here gas prices we are gettign gouged att he pump and gettign robbed while the oil companines continue to make record profits

    April 26, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  18. Paul P.

    Oil prices are a bigger 'hit-home' issue, but there isn't a politician alive who can truly do anything about it outside of promoting clean energy initiatives. The biggest issue has to be jobs, but sadly, there is no 'silver-bullet' answer for that either. The U.S. will be more effective in tackling domestic issues once you realize you cannot continue to try and determine the fates of other nations.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  19. Bryan, Colorado

    No brainer its gas prices. Who really cares about Lybia. All of the Dems I talk to can,t beleive Obama has got us into a 3rd middle east conflict. I care more about my wallet then some terrorist named Gadafy Duck. It's a sad time for Americans. Mr. President please stop this Lybian mess or get us out, or we will make sure you are out in 2012.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  20. Steve, Clifton, VA

    Because they are both so intricately intertwined with one another, each feeds the other, so it would be impossible to separate or prioritize the two issues.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
  21. Rick McDaniel

    Both are big issues, as both are having a huge negative impact on personal and governmental budgets.

    For me, it has become obvious that the free world, cannot effectively change the religious fanaticism of the Islamic world, so we need to get out, of the middle east, and attend to our own affairs.

    Gas prices, are directly related to the one world wide problem, that no one is effectively addressing........which is overpopulation of the planet, by humans, stressing the demand for energy.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  22. Conor in Chicago

    The Mid East. Gas prices are going to go up so long as non-commercial speculation in the oil market is allowed. It's not OPEC raising the price it's Wall Street that's doing it. As our Elite masters will never do anything that helps us over Wall Street the only option is to put a party in power that doesn't want to make Tehran Cleveland. That party is not the Republican party.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  23. Lori - PA

    Jack,

    What about unemployment? That's my issue, and if I had to guess, I'd say it's the same issue for 13.5 million other Americans.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  24. Joe R - Houston

    Without counterfeit dollars, we wouldn't be invading another sovereign nation and without defacing the dollars value, gasoline prices would have been stable for decades.

    I'm paying no attention to dim bulb candidates who only talk about symptoms of the problem caused by flooding the economy with TRILLIONS of counterfeit dollars and since I'm not represented by anyone who takes their oath of office seriously, I'm voting for no incumbents.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
  25. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Duh, let's see do we eat this week and buy gas to go flip burgers for our new and exciting career or do we worry about some other country that has been killing its own people for thousands of years.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  26. Richard35 Canfield, Ohio

    Gas prices, Gas prices. Gas prices! Only Jesus Christ can bring Peace to the Middle East! We mortals Can Not!

    April 26, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  27. Ryan G, Tempe, Arizona

    I would have to say gas prices. I mean with the Middle East, it's just like Paris Hilton or Sarah Palin; any time you mention them, they somehow become relevant even though you wish they would go away because of their irrelevance and... Oops.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  28. Bradley, Portland, OR

    Gas prices. As long as they keep selling us oil at a fair price and don't harbor terrorists, their governments are their own business.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  29. Ed from California

    Costco is at $4.15 a gallon!! Let, the good times roll!! I just wish anyone would take away gasoline from being traded on the commodity market. It's The FCTC (The Futures Commodity Trading Commission) is to blame, along w/ Wall st. For stirring up mass hysteria in our Hoopleheaded populist! No one is standing up to Wall st or it's thieves.....I mean traders!!

    April 26, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  30. Paul From Austin Texas

    Jack the gas prices first and formost. I know I am from Texas and we still have oil but one thing has always gotten to me. The day when the price of oil per barrel goes up so it goes at the pump. I have always said if that is not price fixing I am Donald Trump. How is it when the price per barrel of middle east oil goes our price at the pump goes up way before that more costly oil even gets into our system. I have wrote to my representatives in Congress and the Senate even the White House since Bill Clinton was President with no answer from none of my representitives or Presidents over all those years except we will look into it well if they looked that is all they did. The price of gas means everything costs more even if it is worth using gas to get to work.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
  31. Don

    The Middle East – if that area can be settled down with countries under governments that are at least tolerant of others and open to compromize then the gas prices will take care of themselves.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  32. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    In a way I think higher gas prices is a blessing in disguise. It will force us into the dealing with our dependence on foreign oil and look for more efficient ways to save energy. People will start driving more gas efficient cars and stop driving gas guzzling cars. My biggest issue right now would be the Middle East and the three wars we are involved along with the deficit. The candidate who says he or she would bring an end to the three wars and take away the Bush tax cuts for the most wealthiest incomes would get my vote now and at election time.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  33. Jayne

    Gas prices. The Wall Street casino is still in operation and that is the problem. I'd still vote Democratic, though. Heaven only knows how the Republicans might try to solve the problem. A nuke plant in every neighborhood?

    April 26, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  34. Paul R Schattman

    No contest. It's the Middle East. We must get OUT and I mean NOW. If we spent a quarter of that money on R&D in renewable energy and hydrogen powered vehicle technology we would never need to import oil again.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
  35. Tina Tx

    Gas prices hands down. The Middle East has always fought for whatever reason and if the price of gas goes up much more most of us will be walking to get places. Have you ever been in Texas where to get from point A to point B is real far? Won't be a pretty picture in the summer with a bunch of sweaty bubbas walking to town.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  36. Sylvia from San Diego

    Gas prices is the bigger issue since our economy is interdependant on oil and as the price increases, so will the price of food, clothing, etc. When is this administration going to remove the moratorium on drilling for natural gas and oil? Foreign companies are drilling for oil right off of our shores.... Shouldn't we be doing the same??

    April 26, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  37. marlene

    Given just these two choices, I'd pick gas prices. But the real issue for the 2012 election should only be one – JOBS.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  38. Bob D Iowa

    Gas prices will go up and down. The goverments will change in many foreign countries. But the thing that I watch is my back and the GOP has done nothing but try to stab me in the back since they have become the party of Do it My Way or NO Way. Jack who knows what anymore what these nuts will come up with next.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  39. Jim in Alabama

    Jack, the two are intertwined. The speculators set the price of oil on the ibternational market based upon what they "think may happen" in the middle east which is a flawed system that hurts the consumer. This in turn effects our economy because oil is essential to transportation, farming, making products, and mant other segments of our economy. so, I'm concerned about both! The only answer i see to this delimma is to drill more now, construct new refinaries, look for new sources of oil, and above all, put pressure on a do nothing, corrupt congress to get off their collective butts and pass an effective national energy policy rather than invade other countries to get our hands on their oil.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  40. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    We are focused on the price of gas since it a simple issue and affects every American. The only people who care about the Middle East are the troops in harm's way and their families.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  41. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Both are important issues and neither is separate from the other. Americas meddling in middle east affairs is what has cause the rise in gas prices. What concerns me more then both of these things is the job market and the state of the economy. I don't have to buy gas but I have to work and if there are no jobs I can't feed my family. I think it is time to get out of the middle east and stop spending billions of dollars each week in Afghanistan and bring our troops home. When we start to create jobs here in America instead of in the middle east then the other things will correct themselves.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  42. tom trapani quito ecuador

    Jack, Patrick Moynihan, Democratic leader said it best... all politics is local. The upward movement of gas prices predicted recently to be near $5.00 a gallon by labor day should be focusing the electorates mind. If so, finally !!! A recent poll asking people what they thought the world price of gas in Western European countries was the majority had no clue or simply said about the same. They could not believe the price when it was revealed to between $8-9 a gallon. I bet they do now!!

    April 26, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  43. Dennis north carolina

    Gas prices would be the top issue if elections were held to day. gas prices effect our every day living. it effects our economy, inflation. and the price of goods. the supply of gas is not the problem but the corruption in the system is. our elected leaders have not visited this situation with the exception of Obama. all the rest have sat on their tails especially the republicans who are owned by big business such as oil companies. we need a complete chance in our congress.

    April 26, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  44. Tom Mytoocents Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Jack
    I thought Middle East and gas prices were the same issue

    April 26, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  45. Tom Bulger, Canandaigua

    The Middle-East.

    We've always known there was a finite amount of oil. If Cheney hadn't let Big Oil write his "energy bill" in the back room, gas might already be yesterday's problem.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  46. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Well when president Bush left office the price of gas was 1.86 a gallon. I had to pay $3.64 cents today with Obama as president. I think you can see where i am going with this Jack.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  47. Bud Rupert

    Depends on who you talk to. On gas prices the market rules and there is nothing the President can do about it. So for me it would be the Middle east and I'd say get the heck out of Dodge and lets protect our own borders.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  48. David of Alexandria VA

    Gas prices, by far. Not because of the financial pain, but because of the lack of presidential leadership for the past 2.5 years in coming up with a salable stratregy which will lead to a solution. (I dismiss the Cap and Tax daliance as youthful, inexperienced folly). If he can't muster the leadership skills to recognize energy as a pivotal problem for us and come up with something better that the "hope and change" blather of two weeks ago, our President just doesn't get it. And he should not get four more years of on the job training to learn at our expense.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  49. Chris. Hillsborough, NJ

    Middle East undoubtedly. How could you complain about a few dollars extra at the pump when people are losing their lives?

    April 26, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  50. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York

    Jack,

    The most important issue would be the solution to the two you've referenced; alternative energy. Any party that invests in renewable energy would get us off this Middle East merry-go-round. Imagine a foreign policy with no hidden agendas – what a concept !

    April 26, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  51. Kim Smith

    Aren't they one in the same. A peaceful Middle East is a giant fallacy that will never, ever, in another million years happen. Low gas prices are what this country was built on, what we continue to build on, and what our entire foreign policy is based on. We don't seem to care too much about the people that are exploited by ruthless despots, that we support, as long as the oil flows our way. We are a very hypocritical nation.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
  52. Annie, Atlanta

    Neither – jobs are the issue and will be, I'm afraid, for generations to come. Maybe it would help if the Chamber of Commerce wasn't holding seminars instructing companies on how to relocate their businesses in China. Or if our politicians didn't give carte blanche to those companies.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  53. DON IN WESTPORT, MASS.

    Thats easy.
    The middle east of course. The outcome of all this turmoil in the middle east will directly affect our gas prices at home now and well into the future.
    The oil producing countries are watching closely and their hand is on the spigot.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  54. Pat Ferguson

    I'm not convinced the circumstances in the Middle East are the reason for gasoline prices spiking in the US. Before the protests in Egypt began, there were calls for $5.00 gas by the end of Summer 2011. The cause of rising gas and diesel prices is, IMO, more related to the greed of oil speculators and subsidized Big Oil companies, not politics in the Mideast. Obama seems to be well on his way to being remembered as "The $6.00 Gas Man"!

    Pat
    Green Cove Springs, FL

    April 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  55. Dylan Raines from Washington

    I'm failing to see the distinction.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  56. Ken from Pinon Hills,California

    They are one of the same.
    In the fictional movie. "The Formula" the CEO of an American oil company is played by the late Marlon Brando. In a board meeting he comments,"We are the Arabs". Fictionally, Ironically, or realistically, they are one in the same. They tango as two.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  57. Joe CE

    THey are both big and rejated. We can't do much about the middle east exceptthat there is a chance we will oust Gualdafi. We can do a lot about gas prices starting with relasing some oik from the national reserve. This would kill the speculation driven increse. Then concentrate on developing alternative fuels{ natural gas, wind, solar, and ethanol from garbage & wooid chips. Our goal should be to cut oil comsumption by 50% in 15 years.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  58. Gary H. Boyd

    Gas prices are the chicken that's finally come home to roost Jack.
    It's killing the fuel fed American economy nickel by nickel. I'm betting there's a statistican someplace calculating just how much economic impact each $.05 cent per gallon increase has on our country. We are going down the financial toilet a nickel at a time.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    April 26, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  59. Ralph Spyer

    Gas prices and the Middle East are but one issue, Why are we in Iraq answer oil. Why are we in Afhanistan colonial exploitation ,CIA drug money, to put pressure on Iran, God only knows. Why are we Killing the people of Libya , once again oil.This country can not run on the oil we have so America will do what ever it takes to get all the oil she can

    April 26, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  60. Ray in Knoxville

    Jack, gas prices are a result of our continued dependence on 19th century technology, a policy embraced and championed by Republicans. The Middle East crisis is a result of an official policy of deceit and family revenge, also championed by Republicans. Either way, I know who to blame.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  61. Brian, San Diego, CA

    In part, the two are related, since the unrest in the Middle East is driving up oil prices. However, I would say the Middle East is a bigger issue for me, since the events taking place there now may determine the shape of the region for decades. Our actions now will therefore determine our relations with the countries in the Middle East for decades to come as well, and we have already seen the potential consequences for poor relations with the Middle East.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  62. Ralph Nelson

    A 10-to-15 year "Go to the Moon" alternative energy program to get these country off big oil. The technology is there, but big oil and big coal is financing the GOP and Democratic Senators from coal states to block alternative energy, a new power grid, etc. There is no leadership at the presidential level or Congress. The country has no leader and there isn't anybody running who is one. The nation's biggest threat is the GOP.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  63. Adnan From Connecticut

    Both! How do you think gas prices rise? Oppression in the middle east.the question should be, Should the United States stay out of other's affairs?

    April 26, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  64. JimGreenm Seguin, TX

    Sure, Jack, the Republicans have the right idea if we want an American unfit for human habitiation

    April 26, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  65. Scott Stodden

    I Would Have To Say Both Because Why Are We Involved In All These Conflicts And Wars When We Have Major Problems At Home To Take Of? And Why The Hell Is Gas Prices The Way They Are? We Can't Even Afford To Put Food On The Table Half The Time.

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    April 26, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  66. Steve, Tx

    Both parties got us into this mess, but It really appears that OBAMA has no intention of cutting spending. I glad he will only be a one term Prez.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  67. dolleybird

    The genius in the White House certainly has no idea about how to help the economy. He wants to end subsidies for oil companies – and the oil companies will have to raise gas prices to make up the shortfall of income.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  68. April, Iowa

    I think it is gas prices because that is what seems to be hurting American's the most. To be honest I am not happy we are spending close to two billion dollars a week in the Middle East but right now I think the most important problem is gas prices. When gas prices go over four dollars a gallon I expect to see a lot of Washington to be shook up and I for one cannot wait for that to happen.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  69. Bryan from Miami, Florida

    Gas prices of course. Americans care about their middle-eastern friends but it's human nature, what affects them directly, are a more important issue. Besides, gas price hikes are sort of an effect for the middle-eastern unrest.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  70. David Scott Doherty

    The question is kind of misleading when so much of the gas price issues are tied to the middle east problems. We should have never gotten involved with any of the middle east countries. As far as 9/11 was concerned, how safe would this country be if we had taken about a 50th of the money we spent in Iraq & Afganistan and used it in a proactive way protecting our country, instead of a reactive way, flying off half cocked without thinking about consequences. We couldn't have created more enemies of the US. if we were paying them to hate us, oh wait a minute, I guess a lot were getting paid.
    Dave from Peterborough, NH.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  71. Richard Stevens

    No , all they care about is ,winning the next election.They never have and never will care about the poor or middle class.Most economist say the debt will come down as it did after World War Two,with the great wealth of this country. Especially if the rich would use some of there wealth to pay some of there earning in taxes.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  72. Deborah Seibert,. Co

    Gas and it doesn't have to be that way. Obama can open our reserves, but he wants gas at $8 so he can push his electric car agenda. He does NOT have our best interest at heart.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  73. Dee in New Paris Ohio

    Duh, sounds a lot like the same thing!

    Isn't a lot of the reason for high gas prices linked to the turmoil in the MiddleEast? Isn't the unrest there just the excuse the big oil companies needed to hike up prices to pad their bottom lines? And, with RECORD profits being reported, hasn't the ploy worked extremely well?

    And what part of RECORD PROFITS do people not understand?

    April 26, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  74. Kriss

    There is no way to separate one from the other, but so is the issue of a green car. Perhaps if a candidate or the incumbent would focus on the real cause behind this relationship between gas prices and Libya, and Iraq and Afghanistan, they'd see the answer is very simple and costs a whole lot less. But that would mean they'd have empty election coffers, because big oil would find someone else to be their stooge in Congress.

    Kriss Idaho/California

    April 26, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  75. andrew in nc

    Is there really a difference? Oh yea....we can't drill for our own oil. So there is really no difference.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  76. Stanley Curry

    Jack: I think the Middle East is most important right now. Gas companies will continue to stick it to us either way. They will stick us until we no longer drip blood, and keep on sticking us, just because they can. At least we may help bring peace, Democracy, and some type of stability to other human beings way and / or quality of life. We are humane enough to care about something other than what we can get or un-necessarily take.

    Culver City, CA.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  77. Dave, Orlando, FL

    Gas prices will ruin our economy. The same thing happened to Carter and he lost. The Middle East will ruin our economy since we can’t possibly sustain three wars. God help us if Obama thinks the people in some other Middle East country (or countries) need our help or even if he doesn't. We need to get out of all three and stay out.

    So, take your choice.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  78. Mike in Denver

    They are linked issues—the petroleum companies and speculators see any news from the Middle East as an excuse to hike prices. Until the average person in the U.S. realizes that most of our imported oil comes from Canada and Mexico and not the Middle East, we will all suffer the high price of ignorance.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  79. Bob Brundin

    gas prices ... effect will be immediate, inflationary & catastrophic

    April 26, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  80. Bob, in Florida

    GAS PRICE THEFT by Corporations, Jack!!! The Middle East tensions and revolutions SHOULD teach Americans that we DO NOT HAVE TO TAKE IT ANYMORE. WE NEED TO REVOLT against Corporate greed, Corporate manipulation, Corporate theft of our money, our economy, our Nation.

    We The People only have pseudo freedom. Most Americans WOULD choose an electric car over gas cars...BUT... we ARE NOT given the choice by Corporations. We would choose SOLAR PANELS over coal fired electricity IF WE HAD THE CHOICE. We are boxed in by the control of Corporations IN EVERY ASPECT OF OUR LIVES.

    WE ARE """NOT""" FREE, no matter who we vote for!.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  81. WGS in PA

    Jack,

    We love free markets till the supply/demand ratio causes our oil addiction to cost us money. We do not yet pay what the rest of the world already pays for gasoline and diesel fuel.

    Why are we involved in 3 wars against countries that have not harmed us and have no capacity to harm us. They just have resources our corporations want. Lest we forget all the 9-11 perpetrators are Bin-Laden; or were the hijackers, Saudi citizens But we have no plan to jeopardize Saudi oil supplies.

    Stop these military follies. Fix our revenue problem and the U. S. will prosper – maybe even us in the middle class who do not make a quarter of a million dollars per year.

    April 26, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  82. Linda in Charleston, SC

    I thought most of our oil came from Canada, why do we relate the Middle East to our oil? I get so confused Jack?

    April 26, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  83. mjscherer

    Jack, As long as the US is depended on oil we will defend the Middle Eastern countries, even at the expense of the next generation of Americans. Why is education and medicare the first departments to get cut...why not cut ALL the money for the oil companies.

    April 26, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  84. Tyler

    The gas prices because America does bad when gas is up and America does good when gas is down. When Clinton was pres. and gas was down most Amerians had jobs and were buying products like crazy and we were in other countries. Now gas goes up and we are doing bad.

    April 26, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  85. Robby Bowling

    Let the Arab world fix their own problems. They can't get rid of their dictator, neither can we. Gas prices reflect this country's largest problem . No energy plan & no hope for one unless your 12 & hope that by the time you turn 40 this lame hope & change thing ( green energy ) finely matures into some thing besides a flashlight battery. Let all the government workers pay for their own gas & air fare. It might bring a change, but I doubt it.

    April 26, 2011 at 6:12 pm |