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Seeking to show he understands the burden of rising gas prices, President Barack Obama set an ambitious goal of reducing U.S. oil imports by one-third by 2025, and vowed to break through the political gridlock that has stymied similar initiatives for decades.
"Presidents and politicians of every stripe have promised energy independence but that promise has so far gone unmet," Obama said Wednesday during a speech on the nation's energy at Georgetown University.
"That has to change. We cannot keep going from shock to trance on the issue of energy security, rushing to propose action when gas prices rise, then hitting the snooze button when they fall again," he said.
Obama's remarks come amid rising gasoline prices following unrest in the oil-rich Middle East. Gas prices in the U.S. have shot up 50 cents a gallon this year, reaching a national average of $3.58 a gallon last week, according to AAA's daily survey.