DENVER (KDVR) — Party affiliation is a good predictor of whether a state’s gasoline prices are on the higher or lower end of the national spectrum.
Gas prices have soared to record levels in the last year. Nationally, Americans pay $4.98 per gallon of regular gasoline as of June 20.
Current gas prices are 35 cents higher among states that mostly voted for Democratic Party presidents since 2008 than states that voted for Republican candidates. Blue states had an average price of $5.14 per gallon, while red states pay $4.79 per gallon.
Prices range across the country. They are highest in California at $6.40 per gallon and lowest in Georgia at $4.47 per gallon.
The states with higher gas are concentrated in the West Coast states and their abutting interior states, the Great Lakes, the Mid-Atlantic and New England. States with lower gas prices are in the Great Plains and Southeast.
Colorado, which has an average price of $4.91 per gallon, has the nation’s most median-priced gas.
Only five of the nation’s states in the upper half of gas prices voted mostly Republican in the last four elections. Likewise, only five of the states with prices in the lower range voted Democratic.
The trend is stable for both pre-tax gas prices and for state taxes. Pre-tax gas prices fall mainly along the same lines. Taxes deepen the trend, as blue states with higher pre-tax gas prices also typically have higher state taxes and fees per gallon.
Blue states have an average of 39 cents per gallon in state fees and taxes. Red states charge an average 27 cents.