March 8, 2022
Prior to Monday’s explosive post-briefing kerfuffle (which NewsBusters was able to audio from), the regularly scheduled Psaki Show featured the return of Doocy Time as the Fox News correspondent battled the press secretary over who or what’s to blame for high gas prices and why there’s been, at best, an apprehension to increased domestic oil and gas production as Russia’s war on Ukraine rages on.
Doocy started with the reality that prices were already on the rise prior to Russia’s formal invasion: “It sounds like you guys are blaming Putin for the increase in gas prices recently, but weren’t gas prices going up anyway because of post-pandemic supply chain issues?”
Sure enough, Psaki painted a rosy picture on energy prior to Russia’s unprovoked actions, saying “there’s no question that…the anticipated continued increase…is a direct result of the invasion of Ukraine.”
Doocy countered with what should be an obvious point, but Psaki ducked and somehow tried to paint the administration as pro-energy:
DOOCY: So you say that you’re going to do everything that you can to reduce the impact that high gas prices have on Americans. We’re asking other countries to think about maybe pumping more oil. Why not just do it here?
PSAKI: Well, to be very clear, federal policies are not limiting the supplies of oil and gas.
To Psaki’s chagrin and pleas to “let me finish,” Doocy reminded here that “President Biden signed an executive order his first week that halted new oil and gas leases on public lands.”
Psaki ignored that fact in favor of saying she had to “give you the facts here — and I know that can be inconvenient, but I think they’re important in this moment.”
She gave away the game of many using the crisis to force burdensome so-called clean energy sources on Americans, Psaki said Americans need to “make the shift to secure a…clean energy future” even as “[w]e are one of the largest producers with a strong domestic oil and gas industry” with oil companies holding us back.
Doocy went to easing regulations for drilling on federal lands and allowing for the Keystone XL pipeline to finish, but Psaki deflected by arguing it’s not worth starting new projects because they take time (click “expand”):
DOOCY: Would President Biden rescind his executive order that halts new oil and natural gas leases on public lands?
PSAKI: Well, 90 percent of them happen on private lands, as I’m sure you know and there are 9,000 unused approved drilling permits, so I would suggest you ask the oil companies why they’re not using those if there’s a desire to drill more.
DOOCY: Would President Biden ever undo his executive order that stopped the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline?
PSAKI: Are you suggesting that would solve the gas prices issue?
DOOCY: Well, do you think that that would maybe affect prices faster than getting the whole country off of fossil fuels?
PSAKI: I actually don’t think it would. The Keystone was not an oilfield; it’s a pipeline.
PSAKI: Also, the oil is continuing to flow in, just through other means. So it actually would have nothing to do with the current supply imbalance.
Sticking on this open admission that Americans should pay (more) to back alternative energy sources, Doocy wondered “how high would” gas prices “have to get before President Biden would say” he’d back increased drilling and return to his climate agenda later.
Psaki restated she has “the facts” on her side with Doocy “misidentifying what the actual issue is, but if we’re looking to the future and…what we can do to prevent this…in future crises, the best thing we can do is reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and foreign oil.”
Before moving on, Doocy wondered: “[A]nd you guys think that asking Saudi Arabia or Venezuela or Iran is reducing our dependence on foreign oil?”
Clearly frustrated, Psaki said she had already “outlined each of those specific scenarios” and took a cheapshot at President Trump: “I don’t think anybody is advocating for Iran to continue acquiring a nuclear weapon, perhaps except for the former President who pulled us out of the deal.”