August 27th, 2008
12:10 PM ET
12 years ago

Carter: Oil prices will fall as election gets closer

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Jimmy Carter, a superdelegate, has endorsed Obama ."]
(CNN) - Is there a connection between big oil and Republican politicians?

Former President Jimmy Carter certainly thinks so. In an interview with CBS’s Harry Smith, the former president said the November election is to thank for lower oil prices.

“Between now and November, I predict that the oil companies will hold out on oil prices a little bit,” Carter said with a laugh, “you know, to try to get the Republicans the ticket.”

In July, after the Senate voted to crack down on oil speculators, Republicans vowed to block any further measures until the Senate came to a vote on energy-related issues—in particular, the GOP push to increase oil production.

With the economic outlook dim, and prices at the pump still high, Carter said Wednesday the economy will be the deciding factor for voters come November - just as it was during Bill Clinton’s first campaign for president.

“I’m afraid that by the time January comes along the economy will be the most serious problem in America,” Carter said.

Accusing John McCain of being in the pocket of big oil has been a consistent line of attack from Democrats in the past few months. along with the Obama campaign, have released ads spotlighting what they call the Arizona senator’s “ties” to oil executives.

Filed under: Jimmy Carter
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. darko

    Gustav is a shadow of what Katrina will not drastically affect prices.

    Hurricanes have been hitting the Gulf platforms for decades...they're prepared. Prices will be affected by Georgia/Russia more than Gustav.

    August 27, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  2. Bendo

    correction Nixons Cap: was on wages and prices not taxes my mistake.

    August 27, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  3. Janine

    You know what's funny – I was actually thinking the same thing about gas prices the other day. That gas prices were going down due to the fact the election is getting closer.

    August 27, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  4. ReverendZ

    Carter is a good decade older than McCain – but would still be a far better choice today for president. Shoot, he's a better choice for that office now than he was in '76.

    August 27, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  5. Joe C

    @ Wedge – The oil prices will come down not because big oil fears the republicans, but they fear the windfall profit tax they will have to pay under a democratic administration. They will do ANYTHING to not let that happen, including a huge loss in the next 2 months. Exxon-Mobil just posted the largest quarterly profits IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD!

    August 27, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  6. S. Boatman

    This Is Why Republicans Will Be Voted Out Of The White House This Year! Mccain Is Not Mentally Capable Of Being The President! I Question His Military Record! He Is No Hero! He Is A Manchurian Candidate!

    August 27, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  7. Manuel TX

    Haven't Pelosi and other Democrats been demanding the release of some of the federal emergency oil reserve, specifically to drive down the price of oil.

    If the Republicans are going to orchestrate activity to drive down the price of oil to win an election, wouldn't they have jumped at this opportunity instead of fighting it?

    On one hand you have Obama supporters slamming Bush for the high price of oil, and also slamming him for wanting to lift the ban on offshore drilling, which had an immediate impact on oil speculation and the price of oil, and now Obama supporters are spinning the notion that there will be a conspiracy to drive down the price of oil. Seemingly, Obama supporters want as much negative news on the economy and war as possibly to justify the election of their candidate.

    What lunacy.

    I guess that Obama's personal merits as a candidate are not enough to get him elected and his supporters agree.


    August 27, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  8. mike

    Wow. Oil has been going down for the last 7 weeks and now Carter "predicts" that the Republicans are controlling it between now and November. Isn't the price cyclical, spikes in the summer and begins to lower in the fall? Any more revelations, Jimmy?

    August 27, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  9. Sue

    Of course it will, and Sidekick will claim it was because he was a POW!

    August 27, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  10. KC

    Mike – Texas, you need to go back to school and learn what caused the oil crisis under Carter.

    August 27, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  11. Martin Corbin

    Not only will the oil prices drop, but we'll see more progress in Iraq. You can already see how the Bush Admin is taking the Dem's viewpoints in Iraq and making it appear that they are accomplishing something to keep the Iraq vote in McCain's hands.

    August 27, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  12. MCD, SF, CA

    I totally agree with Carter... said it myself just the other day. McCain says there is nothing wrong with the economy... now they have to make it appear that way.

    I use to be a level-headed person but after what I've seen over the past 8 years... I'm willing to believe just about ANYTHING when it comes to the present admin. No ethics, no morals and don't even get me started on 'VALUES'

    August 27, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  13. Michael

    Carter's gray matter is showing it's age. Since when has any force in the US been able to tell OPEC what the price of a barrel of oil should be? The best we can hope to influnce it is by altering our own demand for it. Like by producing more of our own while at the same time reducing how much we need overall by developing alternative forms of energy. In other words the complete McCain package. Carter is a waste of time. The economy was a disaster under his watch.

    August 27, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  14. Joe C

    @ Darko – Then why does the GOP refuse to acknowledge that speculation has an effect on the market, and in fact deny it? Why do they tell us it's all due to demand from China?

    August 27, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  15. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    To anyone who looks at many things, this will not come as any great surprise. There are many connections between the GOP and OIL. It isn't a hard sell to connect these groups and what they can do together.

    August 27, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  16. Clinton, no, wait, McCain Supporter

    I don't think the Republicans are going to need much help from the oil companies, Mr. Carter.

    The Democrats appear to be doing a find job of electing Mr. McCain.

    August 27, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  17. plainandsimple

    People are really making this decision much harder than it needs to be. If you are happy with the way things are in this country then vote McCain, for it will surely continue in the same direction for 4 more years.
    If you believe there has to be a better way then vote Obama. I'm pretty sure he can not make it worse. You should also remember that no one elected as president starts the job with any experience whatsoever in their first term. It's not possible – the only experienced guy is the guy beginning his second term. And how did that work out for America last time? Oh Yeah....not so good. So much for experience!

    August 27, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  18. Keep our USA safe! McCain 08

    WHO CARES WHY! No one will ever know the real reason,.Justl let it keep coming down.....

    August 27, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  19. indiePA

    Does this come as a surprise to anyone??? These are the same people who want us to think that giving them the rights to even more drilling holes will somehow bring us a lot of oil, reduce the price, etc., etc. DON"T YOU BELIEVE IT!!! The only purpose further drilling rights will serve is to keep us indentured to the oil industry at an even higher cost. If they want McCain elected, you can bet that it's not in the best interest of the citizens of the U.S.

    August 27, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  20. JinNJ is still undecided

    He was a failure as president and is not doing anything to deter votes from McCain. The more I learn about BO the more he reminds me of Carter and pushes me toward McCain.

    August 27, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  21. V

    Gas prices went down before the 2006 mid term elections too. I do think the GOP has a hand in it

    August 27, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  22. nitro

    I thought I was the only person that notice that the minute the Exon profits were reported and people started to talk about it the price of gas started fallen and have not stop since. Its a shame how stupid the republicans think the American people are.

    August 27, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  23. Matthew

    As a Democrat I say, will somebody please keep Jimmy Carter quiet? He was the worst president in recent memory and his conspiracy theories and controversial statements on the Middle East do more to hurt Democrats than help.

    August 27, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  24. Scott Robinson-Woodinville

    This is exactly what happened in 2006. Oil companies were raking in the profits until a few months before the elections, at which point the prices dropped...until a few days after the elections, of course,...and then marched up again. This was done to help republicans. It didn't work, of course, but every little but of help is appreciated. By this time next year, of course, oil and gas will be up again. Remember I wrote it.


    August 27, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  25. Concerned

    The price of gas didn't start going up until the Democraps took over Congress in 2006, hmmm????. And as for Carter, look at the mess he left us in and Regan had to fix!!

    August 27, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
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