Bush and the State of the Union ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Bush and the State of the Union

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Bush and the State of the Union

President Bush is Shown a HybridLast year, in his State of the Union Address, Bush outlined his Twenty in Ten plan, in which the US would cut gasoline consumption by 20 percent over the next ten years. He wanted to increase the supply of renewable fuels and he wanted to reform CAFE. There was a lot of tough talk on how America is addicted to oil and it was time to do something about it.

Then, when Congress tried to pass both measures in the Energy Bill late last year, he threatened to veto it. Eventually, the Bill passed with stronger standards than Bush wanted. But then he (in the form of EPA boss Johnson) used the new CAFE standard to reject the waiver needed by California to enact their own stricter standards.

This year, President Bush focused in on more money for advanced batteries and renewable fuels. Bush also endorsed a new international agreement to reverse the growth of greenhouse gases, as long as China and India are included. But it's easy to see why some would be skeptical about these proposals coming from Bush in his last year as President.

There were a few other proposals tucked in that are of interest to the auto industry. These measures will indirectly affect the hybrid car market, if they are followed up on.

President Bush called for Congress to make permanent the tax cuts enacted in his first term, including a phase out of the estate tax by 2010. He also wants to approve free trade agreements, including one with S. Korea, which would be an important shift for car makers.

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