Over 42,000 Tesla supporters are now urging President Joe Biden to acknowledge Tesla’s undeniable leadership in the American electric vehicle sector. The initiative was started as a Change.org petition a few days ago, and it has garnered 42,522 signatures as of writing.
According to the Tesla supporters, the US President has shown a tendency to ignore Tesla’s leadership, with Biden instead propping up veteran automakers like General Motors as leaders in the country’s EV movement. This is something that the US President has emphasized, even as General Motors noted in its Q4 2021 shareholder deck that it held a 0.0% share of the US EV market in the fourth quarter.
“In the auto industry, Detroit is leading the world in electric vehicles. You know how critical it is? Mary, I remember talking to you way back in January about the need for America to lead in electric vehicles. I can remember your dramatic announcement that by 2035, GM would be 100% electric. You changed the whole story, Mary. You did, Mary. You electrified the entire automotive industry. I’m serious. You led, and it matters,” Biden said last November during GM’s opening of its Factory Zero facility.
The Biden administration’s apparent dismissal of Tesla and its accomplishments was not just true for the president himself. In a recent interview with CNBC, White House Director of the National Economic Council Brian Deese spent a significant amount of time seemingly avoiding a Tesla-related question. US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg also showed a similar tendency back in August 2021, when he seemingly sidestepped a question about why Tesla was not invited to the White House’s EV summit.
Tesla supporters who are currently urging the US President to acknowledge the EV maker’s efforts argue that the administration’s snubs are partly due to Biden being an open supporter of the United Auto Workers union, which automakers like General Motors utilize. Tesla, as well as other carmakers like Toyota and Honda, do not utilize union labor. A look at the comments of some of the Change.org signatories suggests that this view is shared by a good number of Tesla supporters.
Interestingly enough, Tesla CEO Elon Musk was actually optimistic about the Biden administration initially. Back in January 2021, Musk told Fortune that he was delighted about Biden’s win since the administration was focused on the climate. By February, Musk revealed that he had spoken to the Biden administration about a possible carbon tax, which his companies like SpaceX would be paying. The Tesla CEO, however, stated that Biden and his team found the idea of a carbon tax “too politically difficult.”
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