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Chu Changes Tune on Desire for Higher Gas Prices

By Doug Powers  •  March 13, 2012 04:04 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

This morning the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held a hearing on Department of Energy loan guarantees, and Secretary Steven Chu suddenly backed away from a long-held opinion on gas prices (what a difference the release of a couple of polls and a phone call from the boss’s office makes).

From the Washington Examiner:

“We have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe,” Chu said in 2008. When reminded of that comment today during his congressional testimony, Chu backed away from that position.

I no longer share that view,” Chu told Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, today. “When I became Secretary of Energy, I represented the United States government, and I think right now in this econonic, very slow, return — these prices could very well affect the comeback of our economy,” he added.

So Chu wanted gas prices to rise from 2008 until yesterday because they wouldn’t affect the recovery? Kudos to him though for finally realizing why he has to pretend to understand how high gas prices can strangle an economy. You can slip nothing past a Nobel Prize winner.

Sure, it’s possible Chu experienced this awakening only because he finally saw the credit card bill for a month’s worth of fill-ups for the wife’s Volt Bimmy, but this reversal can most likely be chalked up to a healthy dose of low viscosity political pressure from the One Term-Only Prevention wing of the White House.

Update: Video of the above exchange at the Senate hearing can be seen here.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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