The Trump administration launched another salvo in its war on environmental regulations this week by formally revoking California’s authority to set its own auto emissions rules. The administration previously announced that it would pursue anti-trust investigations against four automakers that forged a compromise with California on fuel economy standards. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Republican former governor of California and a staunch EV advocate, has written an eloquent rebuttal in the Washington Post.
“California has been a leader in the fight to clean our air since one of my heroes, Ronald Reagan, was our governor,” writes the Governator. “The Trump administration, for some reason, is hell-bent on reversing decades of history and progress. Whether it is political pettiness, shortsightedness or just plain jealousy, I couldn’t tell you. I can tell you that it’s wrong. It’s un-American. And it’s an affront to long-standing conservative principles.”
Noldi summarizes the history of California’s air pollution regulations under Presidents Richard Nixon, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and calls out the hypocrisy of Republicans who claim to champion states’ rights, business and public safety.
How many times have you heard conservatives beat the drum of states’ rights? But suddenly, when a state wants to pollute less and protect its citizens from deadly pollution, conservatives throw states’ rights straight out the window.
How many times have you heard Republicans talk about being pro-business? But now, when automakers plead with the administration that they don’t want the Stone Age standards the White House is fighting for, some Republicans aren’t acting very pro-business.
How many times have you heard Republicans talk about security and public safety? When Americans are attacked or bridges collapse, we demand action. We know pollution sickens and kills hundreds of thousands; the administration’s own EPA says lowering the automobile standard will literally kill more people. But suddenly public safety doesn’t matter much anymore.
The Austrian-American polymath demolishes the argument that environmental regulations kill jobs: “Last year, the US economy grew by 2.9 percent. California’s economy, with our supposedly crippling regulations, grew by 3.5 percent. We’ve outpaced the nation’s economic growth even as we’ve protected our people.”
The legal battle to dismantle California’s emissions regulations will be a lengthy one, and is likely to end up in the US Supreme Court. The outcome may well determine the future of the US auto industry, to say nothing of its effects on the health of millions of Americans.
“California will fight this decision,” Arnold Schwarzenegger writes. “And I promise you, we will win.”
Source: Washington Post