Benchmark crude is up $2.08, or 2.4 percent, to $88.57 just after 10 a.m. in New York.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is meeting with congressional leaders Thursday, a day after President Barack Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner said that negotiations are progressing.
Wall Street is up on the news as well as well.
If no deal is reached, a series of tax increases and spending cuts will land simultaneously in January.
Also Thursday, the Commerce Department raised its estimate for U.S. economic growth. Any sign the economic recovery is picking up would be a catalyst for energy prices.