A new poll found that a clear majority of Americans place blame for the Russian invasion of Ukraine on the shoulders of President Joe Biden, and an even larger majority want the Biden administration to open up domestic oil production, including a majority of Democrats.
The poll of more than 3,000 registered voters, conducted by HarrisX and obtained by Newsweek, also found that a clear majority of voters want the U.S. to increase its domestic oil production to combat skyrocketing prices at the gas pump. What’s more, a plurality of voters said that the ongoing crisis in Ukraine would make them more likely to vote for Republicans in the upcoming midterms.
Asked who was “more to blame about the Russian invasion of Ukraine,” 58% of respondents put more blame on the Biden administration, while 42% put the onus on former President Trump’s foreign policy. Voters were largely divided on party lines, Newsweek reported, but a large majority of independents, 66%-34%, put the blame on Biden. Even when given more choices to answer, a plurality of voters, 40%, blamed Biden, while just 26% blamed Trump, 24% blamed neither Biden nor Trump, and 10% blamed both of them.
“Voters believe that Biden has projected weakness to Putin with the slow rollout of economic sanctions,” said Dritan Nesho, the chief pollster and CEO of HarrisX. “If the Ukraine crisis drags on and is top of mind leading to the midterms, it looks like voters — especially independents — will punish Democratic leaders for slow and tepid actions.”
On the domestic front, voters were asked, in light of the invasion of Ukraine and gas prices skyrocketing as a result, whether or not the Biden administration should scale back its emphasis on climate change and move to open up oil and natural gas exploration within the U.S. Another massive majority, 69% said “yes,” they did want the U.S. to open up more drilling, while just 31% said no. Notably, even a majority of Democrats, 53%-47%, favored opening up domestic energy production, while only 30% of independents did not favor more energy production.
Finally, when asked whether the Russian invasion of Ukraine made voters more or less likely to change their party vote in the upcoming 2022 midterm elections, a plurality of voters, 36%, said it made them more likely to vote for a Republican candidate, while 24% said it made them more likely to vote Democrat, while 31% said it did not impact their vote at all. Critically, a sizable portion of independents, 31%, said it made them more likely to vote Republican, while just 13% said they were more likely to vote Democrat.
The poll comes as the nationwide average price for a gallon of gasoline has soared to a record high. The Daily Wire reported Monday that gas prices hit a record high of $4.104 per gallon, according to data collector GasBuddy. Prices increased 49.1 cents in the span of a week, also the highest on record. News of the sky-high gas prices has led to bipartisan calls to reopen domestic energy production and exports to American allies. But Biden has been adamant in recent days that his policies are not responsible for the surge in prices, and that there is nothing he can do to stop the continuing rise in costs for Americans, despite the fact that he revoked the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline on his first day in office and has temporarily suspended new oil and gas leases.