Apparently, Donald Trump isn’t unpopular enough. His latest attempt to woo the American public (aside from attacking US heroes and his longtime right-hand man) is for his administration to hate on US government support for true energy independence, energy security, clean air, and clean water through electric vehicles and clean energy.
Yep, the Donald Trump administration thinks it is smart to oppose what the vast majority of Americans (even Republican voters) support.
This is after trying to create new subsidies for coal and nuclear power (since they are no longer competitive and Republican swamp things want new dirty power plants).
This is despite the fact that the Trump administration has not lifted a finger to cut billions of dollars a year in fossil fuel subsidies (including through externalities).
Study after study has found that Americans of all stripes strongly favor government support for solar energy, wind energy, and electric vehicles. There is vast support for EV, solar, and wind subsidies to boost these clean, economically beneficial, young industries. The Trump administration’s opposition to them doesn’t at all go with the flow of public opinion and preference. But hey, isn’t that the norm for his crew? They have also opposed the Affordable Care Act and weakened it; cut regulations protecting our air, water, and climate; cost the US thousands of jobs via counterproductive tariffs; and done essentially nothing else while in power aside from cutting taxes on the super wealthy.
Who does it help to eliminate support for clean transport and clean energy? Oil, gas, and coal billionaires and millionaires who would rather see slower clean energy and electric vehicle growth. Those oil, gas, and coal billionaires and millionaires donate heavily to the Republican Party and some of them are “friends” with Donald Trump.
The sort of funny (and ridiculous + petty) thing about this news is that it seems to be partly in retaliation to GM for GM’s recent announcements about factory closures. The funny part of that is that Trump’s administration (through Larry Kudlow) is talking about ending the EV tax credit in 2020–2021, but GM is passing the critical 200,000 vehicle milestone this quarter … which means that GM buyers won’t be eligible for the tax credit by then anyway, which means retaining the tax credit would benefit other automakers that have been slower to stimulate purchases of EVs (not GM).
The other funny thing is the While House has no authority to end any of these incentives. As The Hill puts it, “It’s unclear how the administration plans to cut the tax credits, since Congress enacted them and would have to act to end them.”
So, wait, the Trump administration can’t eliminate the subsidies? So what’s the point of all this anti-cleantech talk? All I can guess is it’s another attempt to drive down Trump’s pitifully low approval rating, which is indeed far too high for what Donald has done in the White House.
Charts via Open Secrets
Note: Ignore the Renault Zoe in the picture at the top. 😉
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