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Biden administration turns to oil reserves to lower gas prices

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River to River airs weekdays at 12 p.m. on IPR News and News/Studio One and 10 p.m. on IPR News, and is available as a podcast most days by 5 p.m.

The federal government is taking the rare step of releasing oil from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve in an effort to address rising gas prices ahead of the holiday season.

President Joe Biden announced Tuesday that he'd tap the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve in an effort to tamp down spiking gas prices. The rise in costs comes in conjunction with the president's less-than-stellar popularity numbers.

On this episode of River to River, host Ben Kieffer speaks with two political scientists about the impact that gas prices are having and the extent to which making 50 million barrels of oil available will meet smooth the mismatch in consumer demand causing the highest gas prices in seven years.


  • Jim McCormick, professor of political science at Iowa State University
  • Tim Hagle, associate professor of political science at the University of Iowa
Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River
Zachary Oren Smith is a producer for IPR's Talk of Iowa and River to River