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Politics Is Pushing Some Americans to Resist Electric Vehicles

Many U.S. consumers resist buying electric vehicles because of politics—Republican voters are likely to have negative opinions about EVs and wouldn’t buy such a car even when they can afford it.

Most conservative respondents in a Morning Consult poll for The Wall Street Journal view electric cars unfavorably, with 41% saying their opinion is ‘very unfavorable’ and another 20% ‘somewhat unfavorable.’

Just 31% of people who identified themselves as conservative said they had a favorable view of EVs. This compares with 66% of respondents who identified themselves as liberals and have a favorable opinion of electric cars. 

The EV adoption and the federal mandate to get EV sales soaring has become a politically divisive issue, especially ahead of the November presidential election.

President Joe Biden is pushing for a growing share of EVs in the nation’s fleet, while the presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump is firmly against incentivizing EV purchases and has promised to roll back Biden’s policies.

If Trump wins the presidential election, he is sure to support the oil and gas industry by introducing more lease sales – after all, "drill, baby, drill" is a frequent campaign talking point, as is Biden's EV mandate.

"On day one, I will end Crooked Joe Biden's insane electric vehicle mandate," Trump said at a rally earlier this year. 

Meanwhile, EVs lost market share in the United States in the first quarter of 2024, as battery electric vehicle (BEV) sales fell for the first time since the onset of Covid in 2020.

U.S. automakers have been flagging a slowdown in consumer uptake of EVs since the end of last year.

Last month, Ford Motor Company said it is delaying the planned rollout of some of its next-generation electric vehicles as it is expanding hybrid vehicle offerings, in the latest sign that consumer uptake of EVs has slowed down.

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“The additional time will allow for the consumer market for three-row EVs to further develop and enable Ford to take advantage of emerging battery technology, with the goal to provide customers increased durability and better value,” Ford said in a statement in April.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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  • George Kamburoff on May 27 2024 said:
    Do you still have to pay for electricity and gasoline?
    Not us, we invested in a solar system and electric cars and have lived and driven with free electricity for eight years now.
    The PV solar system paid back in three years in gasoline savings alone.

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