Newt Gingrich: Obama's Goal Is '$8 or $9 a Gallon' Gas

Erik Schelzig/AP Photo

GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich this morning chided the Obama administration, saying the president has "a goal getting us to pay European-level prices" for gas.

"This president and his secretary of anti-energy, Dr. Chu, have as a goal getting us to pay European-level prices of $8 or $9.  Dr. Chu was clear about that before he became secretary.  He wants us to get to be a European-level price structure  of $8 or $9 a gallon," said Gingrich. "He said this week, in testifying in the House, he has 'no intention of trying to lower the price of oil or the price of gasoline.'  The American people on the other hand would much rather pay $2.50 and be independent of Saudi Arabia than be where we are today. "

I also spoke with Obama campaign senior adviser David Axelrod later in the program and he told me that the Obama administration wants lower gas prices even though Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said recently that lower gas prices are not the president's main goal.

"We always want lower gas prices, because that's good for our economy.  The question is whether it's realistic to say, as the speaker did, that there's some magic fairy dust that you can sprinkle and get $2.50 gas?  The American people know that's not the case," said Axelrod. "We have been dealing with this for some time.  Six months before the president took office, gas was at $4.10.  The reason that it was lower when he took office was because we had a worldwide recession.  That's not a strategy for lower gas prices that we want to follow."