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LETTER: Electric cars and government ‘investments’

In response to your Oct. 21 editorial, “State should resist calls for EV subsidies”: Agree or disagree, your editorial brings up a very important issue, namely the government’s role in funding electric vehicle research.

You correctly note that it “will ultimately be the private sector that will most efficiently provide the products … to complete any transition.” And, “It’s also worth noting that the primary barrier discouraging many consumers from going electric … is the limited battery range that restrains travel.”

But your statement that the clamoring for public investments is a code word for “wealth redistribution” is a gross overstatement.

The U.S. government, practically speaking, has been in the business of funding a long list of goods and services for a very long time. For example, per Investopedia, “While many industries receive government subsidies, three of the biggest beneficiaries are energy, agriculture, and transportation.”

As Nathan Taft of The Fuel Freedom Association correctly pointed out, “It seems like every day there’s a new ‘think piece’ out there decrying the subsidies that renewable energy, alternative fuels and the vehicles that run them receive. Yet when it comes to the substantial government assistance for oil companies, those same critics are conspicuously silent. … Oil companies continue to be subsidized at a rate of 7-to-1 compared to permanent tax breaks that go to renewable energy.”

So, please, for us as taxpayers to provide funding for the burgeoning EV industry is money well spent.

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