May 23, 2019

Voters are bullish on electric vehicles, but there's a partisan gap

Ben Geman, author of Generate

A newly released poll shows partisan differences over electric vehicles but nonetheless has bullish data for those excited about rapid expansion of what's still a niche market.

Expand chart
Data: Climate Nexus poll conducted April 16-17, 2019 among 1,939 registered U.S. voters; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

By the numbers: 44% of voters plan to go electric when they replace their wheels in the next 5 years, including over half of Democrats.

Why it matters: EVs are growing fast, but cars with a plug are still in the low single digits of total U.S. car sales.

  • We'll have to wait and see how many of those "likely" answers actually translate into actual new sales, but it's still a sign of strong consumer interest.

The intrigue: Another big takeaway is that incentives matter. Strong majorities, including 71% of Republicans, say a $7,500 tax credit would increase their likelihood of going electric.

  • That's a hot topic now because both Tesla and GM have reached the 200,000 vehicles per manufacturer cap on the $7,500 credit.
  • Bipartisan bills in both chambers would expand the program, but the White House is not pro-EV.

Who they are: The survey was conducted by the communications group Climate Nexus and climate programs at Yale and George Mason universities.

But, but, but: Separate polling released yesterday by Morning Consult highlights barriers to EV adoption:

  • "The key roadblocks to potential increased sales include concern over the potential unavailability of or distance to charging stations (62 percent said this would make them less likely to consider an electric vehicle) and high upfront costs (60 percent)."

Go deeper: Billion-dollar bets on electric vehicles await payoff

Go deeper

Updated 10 mins ago - Politics & Policy

The latest: George Floyd protests nationwide

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued for a seventh day across the U.S., with President Trump threatening on Monday to deploy the military if the unrest continues.

The big picture: The National Guard members has been activated in at least 23 states and Washington, DC., with curfews in place in at least 40 cities after days of unrest, per CNN.

2 hours ago - World

The world watches America burn

Newspaper front pages via the Newseum

The world is watching the grief and anger, violence and pain in America's streets.

The big picture: The U.S. accounts for nearly one-third of the world's deaths from COVID-19. The killing of a black man, George Floyd, by police has sparked days of protest and nights of chaos in America's major cities.

Trump walks to historic St. John's Church outside White House as protests rage

President Trump walked to the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church, located just steps away from the White House across Lafayette Park, on Monday night as protests linked to the murder of George Floyd raged across the capital and cities around the country.

What we're seeing: Military police and park rangers used physical force and tear gas on peaceful protestors to clear the area so that Trump could "pay respects" to the church that was damaged by a fire on Sunday.