Romney flip-flops, sides with California over Trump on auto waiver

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Posted by Mike Palicz on Thursday, September 19th, 2019, 8:46 PM PERMALINK

Mitt Romney is now criticizing President Trump for actions he claimed he would have carried out as president, had his own campaigns not failed.

Today, in a complete reversal of his previous stance on auto fuel efficiency standards, Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) publicly criticized President Trump’s decision to revoke California’s waiver allowing the state to set separate greenhouse-gas standards for cars, calling Trump’s action a “big mistake.”

According to Politico, Romney went on to advocate for increasing the Obama-era mandate that would require auto manufacturers to produce cars averaging nearly 55 miles per gallon by 2025, stating “we should encourage more strict fuel economy standards, not weaken them."

Romney’s harsh remarks of President Trump come as a shock given his past statements, including those given as a presidential candidate in both 2008 and 2012, were strongly critical of fuel economy standards and California’s ability to operate beyond federal requirements.

Romney on the Campaign Trail in 2008 says CAFE Standards drop an “anvil on Michigan”

According to reports after a Presidential Primary debate in 2008, Romney “talked up his roots in the auto industry and criticized fuel economy standards, saying the 35 miles-per-gallon target by 2020 passed by Congress in December ‘dropped yet another anvil on Michigan.’"

Romney is now calling for “more strict fuel economy standards” than Obama’s 55 miles per gallon requirement.

Romney backs stripping California’s waiver in 2008 press release

"When Michigan makes the same cars and trucks regardless of whether they are bound for California, Vermont or (even) Massachusetts, it makes more sense to have one set of federal rules to address CO2 emissions from vehicles rather than a patchwork of different state regulations."

While campaigning for President In 2012 Romney calls CAFE standards “disadvantageous” and says “we need to get the government out of these companies’ hair.”

“The government put in place CAFE requirements that were disadvantageous for domestic manufacturers. We need to get the government out of these companies’ hair and let them go to work to become competitive — not only in the U.S. but globally. The world is changing in the auto industry and we’ve got to get these companies on a global footing as opposed to kowtowing to Washington.” 

Romney and Campaign called CAFE Standards "extreme" and cause consumers to "pay thousands of dollars more upfront for unproven technology."

In June of 2012, Romney called told The Detroit News that he'd seek "a better way of encouraging fuel economy" than the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) requirements. A campaign spokesperson reiterated Romney's opposition, saying that CAFE will force consumers to "pay thousands of dollars more upfront for unproven technology that they may not even want."

 

Photo Credit: Joeff Davis

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