Gas prices could rise if Trump goes hard after Venezuela.
When you’re president, cheap gas is good politics.
President Donald Trump understand this. Now Trump faces a dilemma: He wants to be a tough world leader who cracks down on foes like Venezuela, but that could cause gas prices to jump in the United States.
Trump is no fan of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. The White House is feeling the pressure to act. The most obvious way to hurt Maduro is to hit the heart of Venezuela’s economy: oil.
But American sanctions on Venezuelan oil could backfire. Venezuela supplies 10 percent of America’s oil, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, making it the third-largest U.S. supplier behind Canada and Saudi Arabia.
Going hard after Venezuela would probably cause gas prices to rise in the United States, at least in the short run. Philip Verleger, an energy economist who runs consulting firm PK Verleger, predicts, “Prices would go up like a rocket. Gas prices in the U.S. would go up 25 or 30 cents a gallon within a couple of weeks.”