Liberal commentator Keith Olbermann on Sunday suggested that the price of gas had been artificially manipulated since President Barack Obama took office to hurt his chances at re-election.

In an appearance on ABC, Olbermann noted he had become suspicious after gas prices increased from $1.61 a gallon when Obama took the oath of Office in January 2009 to nearly $4 a gallon earlier this month.

"The lowest gas prices in the last six years, the nadir of gas prices at the pump, was the day of this president's inauguration in 2009," Olbermann explained. "There has to be some connection between that being the least-busy political moment of a president's career -- when you're not going to hurt him and you're not going to harm him that way -- and the price of gas."

"There has to be an almost deliberate or at least a side-effect quality to that. There must be."

Last week, the president proposed measures that would give regulators more power to limit manipulation of the oil markets.

“We can’t afford a situation where some speculators can reap millions while millions of American families get the short end of the stick,” he told reporters.

But Republicans like Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) quickly dismissed the proposal.

During a recent interview with the blog Shark Tank, Bachmann insisted that new legislation wasn’t necessary because Obama “already has the tools and he knows it.”

“This is just about waving a tar baby in the air and saying that something else is the problem. I have never seen a more irresponsible president who is infantile in the way that he continually blames everybody else for his failure to, first, diagnose the problem and, second, to address the problem. It’s always everyone else’s fault.”

Watch this video from ABC's This Week, broadcast April 22, 2012.