Biden’s plan to wipe out gas vehicles suffering crushing backlash
You cannot fault the guy for trying. Nothing in President Biden’s political agenda has gotten more push from him than his plan to clear the roads of gas vehicles. He is driven by a belief that dinosaurs – or at least their remains – are an existential threat to humans.
To pursue his agenda, Biden has cut the production of oil to force the conversation by running up gas prices – including shutting down the Keystone Pipeline. He is using massive amounts of taxpayer money to subsidize manufacturing of all-electric vehicles – and offering huge rebates to purchasers of electric cars.
Biden sells his all-electric program as the only way to stop humanity from going extinct on a planet he foresees to be hotter than Death Valley at high noon.
The problem is that despite all his efforts, the consuming public is not buying it – neither electric cars nor Biden’s Draconian sales pitch. All electric vehicles currently represent just under 6 percent of the American car market. That is very bad news for Ford, GM and Rivian. Combined they comprise only 17.4 percent of the American market. Elon Musk’s Tesla brand has 60 percent.
If you look at it in terms of numbers, Tesla sold more than 155,000 electric cars in the First Quarter of 2023. GM sold 19,000 … Rivian 11,000 … and Ford 13,000.
Also, Ford announced that it is cutting back on the size and production numbers of their new plant in Marshall, Michigan due to low demand and higher costs. The Company is reducing its investment by $1.7 billion … cutting the production by 40 percent … and cutting employment by 1700 jobs. Ford is also cutting $12 billion dollars in other electric vehicle investments – including a proposed battery plant in Kentucky.
In terms of Tesla, Biden appears to have put politics over his own electrification program. He does not like Elon Musk. In fact, when Biden invited the major electric vehicle manufactures to the White House for a publicity event, he did not invite Musk – America’s number one electric vehicle manufacturer. Apparently, the problem stems from Musk’s more conservative philosophy and the fact that his cars are manufactured in non-union factories.
Biden crafted the tax credits in his misnamed Inflation Reduction Act to cut out Tesla. There is a $7500 per vehicle tax credit for all manufacturers and a bonus of $4000 for vehicles produced in union shops. That includes all American manufactures – except Tesla. If that has cut into Tesla sales, it is hard to see evidence if it.
Just recently more than 3,800 car dealers from every state – and representing every brand – issued an open letter to Biden expressing their opposition to regulations mandating the production and distribution of electric vehicles. They said that they are having trouble selling them because of lack of infrastructure, ineffective incentives and little consumer demand. They said that “consumers are not ready” for electric vehicles.
The dealers urged Biden to adopt more flexible regulations – meaning scraping a lot of them – and taking a more “market-driven” approach. This is the classic issue between free-market conservative and progressive governance by imposed regulations and market manipulating tax incentives.
While Biden and the United Auto Workers leadership are patting each other on the back over the strike settlement. However, the folks working on the line are fully aware of the fact that all electric vehicles require less production. The conversion will cost jobs – lots of jobs.
It would now appear that Biden’s hope of replacing gas cars with electric by 2050 is going to be dashed. It is unlikely that gas cars will be completely replaced by 2070 … 2080.
There will come a time when we transition away from fossil fuel for cars – and almost everything else. That is more likely to happen when Mother Earth starts to run out of fossil fuel, rather than any forced government program. But that is a looong way off. Reports of the extinction of the gas guzzling dinosaurs that dominate the earth today is premature.
So, there ‘tis.