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Scoop: EV group hires GOP resource staffer

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Feb 12, 2024
Illustration of an electric vehicle plugged in to a charging station.

Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

A key EV trade group has brought on serious GOP lobbying muscle.

Why it matters: The EV sector is increasingly requiring powerful allies on both sides of the aisle, no matter how the 2024 elections shake out.

  • That's partially due to federal policy fights on emissions standards, tax credits and permitting that are crucial to any nationwide decarbonization of transportation.

Driving the news: The Zero Emission Transportation Association has hired Rebecca Konolige — a House Natural Resources Republican staffer — to head federal affairs, the trade group told Axios.

  • Konolige had been with Natural Resources Republicans since 2016. She started at ZETA in late January.

What they're saying: "Rebecca brings substantial experience and insight to [our group] as we work to accelerate growth in our domestic mineral and battery supply chains," said ZETA executive director Albert Gore III in a statement.

Between the lines: Should the 2024 elections swing Republicans' way, it'll be beneficial for the newish trade association to have an experienced GOP staffer helming the lobbying arm.

  • As we've previously reported, a future Trump administration may try to change the IRA's electric vehicle credits … or even go for a repeal.
  • But permitting might be even more important, because ZETA also represents myriad U.S. battery mineral mining companies.

Editor's note: This story has been corrected to note that Konolige had been with the Natural Resources Committee since 2016 (not 2018).

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