Election unlikely to significantly harm Michigan’s auto industry, professor says

Changes to fuel efficiency standards are likely the biggest effect of who wins the White House
A 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD in body marriage on Thursday, January 24, 2019 at General Motors...
A 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD in body marriage on Thursday, January 24, 2019 at General Motors Flint Assembly in Flint, Michigan. (Photo by John F. Martin for Chevrolet) (WJRT)
Published: Oct. 28, 2020 at 7:17 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 28, 2020 at 10:29 PM EDT
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MID-MICHIGAN (WJRT) - A major campaign point in the Nov. 3 election is the future of automotive manufacturing.

Cleaner energy, electric vehicles and improved fuel efficiency standards are all things U.S. automakers are tackling. But how that is all done could be in the hands of who is in the White House for the next four years.

“The Trump presidency has been very focused on bringing jobs back to the United States, and his levers have primarily been on trade policy and on regulatory relief," said Kristen Dziczek.

The Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor believes that will continue to happen under the Trump administration. However, believes some of those fuel efficiency regulations that were relaxed under the Trump administration could come back under a Biden administration.

“Will some more regulations be instituted if Biden became president? Probably. Would it have a terrible impact on the U.S. auto industry? Probably unlikely," said Saginaw Valley State University political science professor Jessie Donahue.

Trump has been a big supporter of the oil and gas industry while Biden has supported cleaner energy and electric vehicles. Auto experts say the Detroit Three automakers are looking for stability and not sudden changes that could affect product lines down the road.

“The timelines for developing vehicles, developing technology that’s in our vehicles lasts well beyond one presidential term, so they have to hit a mark of what consumers want to buy, what consumers are willing to pay, what features people want to have and what the regulatory environment is going to look like six, seven or eight years from now," Dziczek said.

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