(NewsNation) — President Joe Biden is attempting to lower gas prices by releasing 15 million barrels of oil from the nation’s emergency oil reserve. On Thursday, the national average for a gallon of gas is at $3.84, according to AAA, which is slightly down since the announcement on Wednesday.
However, the average per gallon of gas in California is sitting at $5.84, which is two full dollars above the national average.
Gov. Gavin Newsom, who is up for reelection, is pointing the blame at oil and gas companies, proposing a windfall tax on oil companies and calling on them to produce a cheaper winter blend of gas to cut prices.
Critics who disagree with the tax proposal say that California politicians can only hold themselves accountable for having the highest gas prices in the country.
The California Energy Commission sent a letter to some of those major oil companies demanding an answer as to why the California gas prices continued to go up when really it looked like the rest of the nation was leveling off.
Shortly after that, Newsom launched his own attack, firing off tweets, calling oil companies greedy and saying they’re raking in record profits and ripping people off at the pump.
However, companies like Phillips 66, Valero and Chevron said it’s actually the state’s harsh energy policies that are causing this trouble.
The governor is expected to go up against his Republican challenger Brian Dahle on Sunday in California’s midterm election debate. Dahle is expected to push back on California’s energy policies during the debate.