Newsom's plan for free gas cards will drive prices, inflation even higher, expert warns

GasBuddy's Patrick De Haan says, 'This will end badly'

An oil and gas prices expert warned that California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s plan to give out free gas cards will drive up prices and inflation even higher.

Newsom turned heads on Thursday when he announced his proposal for $400 gas rebate cards to be given to Golden State motorists to offset the skyrocketing gas prices.

Patrick De Haan — who runs the gas price-monitoring service GasBuddy — was quick to express this concern, tweeting several times about how bad of an idea Newsom proposed.


Gavin Newsom

In this Sept. 14, 2021, file photo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks in San Francisco. On Thursday, he signed a series of police reform measures in an effort to increase transparency.  (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File / AP Newsroom)

"Newsom wants to swell California gasoline demand at a time of refinery challenges and high prices," De Haan warned. "This will end badly."

"Politicians must resist the urge to get in the middle of markets and let it run its course," he continued.

"I, along with most other Americans, hate the high price of gasoline, but giving out gas cards and tax holidays is akin to handing a bottle of Jack Daniels to someone that's already drunk," De Haan wrote in a separate tweet. "It enables high prices and high demand."

De Haan also wrote that if "inflation isn't high enough already, throw gas cards at everyone and watch what happens."

Newsom said in a statement that his administration is "taking immediate action to get money directly into the pockets of Californians who are facing higher gas prices as a direct result of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine."

California car owners would be sent prepaid debit cards in the mail and public transit would be made free for three months under the proposal, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

While the gas cards would give money back to California drivers, doing so would also drive inflation and gas prices even higher as more money and demand hit the market simultaneously.

A mammoth market cash injection like what Newsom is proposing would cause inflation to fly higher by lowering the value of the dollar as more money floods the market.

Additionally, trying to offset the increase in gas prices by giving people a gas rebate can drive up demand, further adding to gas prices and putting stress on Americans’ wallets.


These compounding factors could put further pressure on the gas market and make driving virtually unaffordable for the average American while making public transit wait times longer.

Newsom’s office did not respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.