The general political attitudes taken by the left and right in the US are, sadly, divided on the issue of fuel efficient vehicles. Broadly speaking, Republicans dislike the whole idea (even going to absurd extremes like Newt Gingrich saying that inflating your tires helps Big Oil) while Democrats are in favor. The stereotype even gets in the way of people thinking that the DOE's Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) loan program is an Obama Administration creation. It's not, and was started under President Bush in 2008.
The political divide has been particularly strong when it came to Tesla Motors. Most readers probably remember when Republican Presidential contender Mitt Romney attacked the automaker during a debate with President Obama. New Jersey governor Chris Christie has been fighting Tesla's moves in his state as well. But, wait, is there a change in the air?
The San Francisco Chronicle's David Baker has written an interesting story that looks at some positive statements from prominent Republicans recently, for example when Bill O'Reilly said everyone should get behind Tesla or when Texas governor Rick Perry said he supports the EV automaker selling directly to customers. Baker has an interesting take on this shift and what it might mean for upcoming elections. We recommend you head over to SFGate to read the whole thing. Here's a teaser:
Read the whole article.
Some Democrats doubt, however, that the GOP as a whole will embrace Tesla and clean tech anytime soon. Wade Randlett, a Silicon Valley executive and major Democratic fundraiser, noted the Republican Party's deep ties to the oil industry - the companies most threatened by electric cars.