4. How Democrats want to remake the auto sector
Axios' Joann Muller and Alayna Treene report ... While President Trump is moving to ease Obama-era tailpipe emissions rules, Democrats running to unseat him want to accelerate the shift to electric cars, trucks and buses and take gasoline-powered vehicles off the market entirely.
Why it matters: The 2020 presidential race could produce two vastly different outcomes for the auto industry, and that regulatory whiplash is hampering carmakers' long-term investment decisions.
Here's a rundown of some of the policies Democratic candidates would use to push the country toward cleaner cars:
Emissions: Most of the candidates say they'll push for a "zero emissions economy" by 2050 or earlier, and a few have deadlines for electric vehicle adoption.
- Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang both say their goal is 100% zero-emissions for all new vehicles by 2030. Pete Buttigieg's targets are 2035 for ZEVs, and 2040 for heavy-duty trucks.
Consumer incentives: Many say they would extend tax breaks and offer trade-in discount programs to encourage people to replace their gasoline-powered cars with a zero-emission vehicle.
Charging infrastructure: Most candidates agree more charging stations are needed to support the shift to electric vehicles. For instance, Joe Biden says he would add 500,000 new public charging outlets by the end of 2030.
Manufacturing incentives: The Democrats link vehicle electrification to U.S. manufacturing and jobs.
But, but, but: Several major pieces of the Democrats' plans, such as expanded EV tax credits and major new spending on charging infrastructure, would require congressional action.
- Even if their most aggressive plans don't come to pass, the Democrats would likely reverse Trump's efforts to weaken efficiency and emissions rules.
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Speaking of cars, the Wall Street Journal reports: "The Justice Department has issued civil subpoenas to four auto makers that reached a tailpipe emissions deal this summer with the state of California...the latest development in a federal antitrust investigation that has generated political controversy."