As a result of major investment in ethanol the last two years, supported by both parties, more of the corn-based fuel will be coming online next summer, according to Tom Kloza, an analyst at Oil Price Information Service. And the increase in supply should help ease prices.
Kloza also said Democrats will tend to focus more on conservation measures, which could bring down demand and further reduce prices.
Another difference with the Republicans: Democrats may be less tolerant of big investment money bidding up oil prices. "If you continue to see inventory increases accompanied by rising prices, the Democrats are going to say 'Hey, what’s going on'," said Kloza.
In addition, the appointment of Robert Gates to succeed Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld could alleviate some geopolitical concerns for now, meaning less upward pressure on crude prices, according to a research note by Adam Sieminski, chief energy economist for Deutsche Bank.
With contributions from staff writers Jeanne Sahadi, Aaron Smith, Chris Isidore and Steve Hargreaves