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Prices for West Texas crude oil are hovering around $65 a barrel. That’s more than twice the price at this time just two years ago. Oil companies, including major players like Exxon Mobil and Chevron, have let investors know they’re increasing production, specifically in Texas’ Permian Basin, where output has tripled in the past three years. What does this increased output means for America’s ability to assert influence in the global oil and gas market?

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Follow Andy Uhler at @andy_uhler