Captain's Quarters Blog

« CQ: Watcher's Council Nomination | Main | Gorelick: More Calls For Her Testimony »

April 22, 2004
OK, Now He's Against Gas Guzzlers

Oh, that wacky John Kerry! According to his campaign website, which copied a glowing Detroit Free Press article from February 1st, Kerry's principled stand on higher corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards has made him the "nemesis" of Michigan automakers, but damn it all, he stands firmly for the environment:

However, Kerry's efforts over the years to raise fuel-efficiency standards could cause him problems among some Michigan voters. In a state that is home to the auto manufacturers, Kerry is well known for his fight to tighten these standards on cars and light trucks enough to produce a fleet average of 36 miles per gallon by 2015. That would be a dramatic increase from the current 27.5 m.p.g. now required.

A measure that would have raised those standards to 40 m.p.g. failed last summer to pass the Senate, which instead required the Transportation Department to consider an array of issues - from job losses and highway safety to economic impact on U.S. auto manufacturers - before any change could be made in corporate average fuel economy, or CAFE, standards.

Kerry's insistence on higher CAFE standards has made him the auto industry's "nemesis,'' according to one industry insider.

Unfortunately, the Guardian (UK) reports that Kerry stands firmly on both sides of this issue, like so many others, demonstrating that fuel efficiency requirements only apply to the lesser beings:

"I don't own an SUV,'' said Kerry, who supports increasing existing fuel economy standards to 36 miles per gallon by 2015 in order to reduce the nation's dependence on foreign oil supplies. ... Kerry thought for a second when asked whether his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, had a Suburban at their Ketchum, Idaho, home. Kerry said he owns and drives a Dodge 600 and recently bought a Chrysler 300M. He said his wife owns the Chevrolet SUV.

"The family has it. I don't have it,'' he said.

The EPA rates the 2004 Chevrolet Suburban 1500 (gas only) at a paltry 14 MPG in the city, 18 MPG highway. The Suburban 2500 isn't rated, but since it has an 8.1L engine as opposed to the 1500's 5.3L, one could suppose that the fuel efficiency probably drops considerably from those poor standards. The 2004 Chrysler 300M does somewhat better at 18/27, but only scores a 6 on emissions ratings. They don't list a Dodge "300", but a quick browse through all of Dodge's higher-end vehicles doesn't demonstrate a green outlook at all.

All in all, Kerry has postured himself as the "fine for me but not for thee" candidate, hasn't he? Either that, or we're going to wind up in a lengthy debate as to the definition of "family". (via Hugh Hewitt)

UPDATE: Jon at QandO notes that the Chrysler 300M is made in Canada, a lovely counterpoint to his assertion that "I want cars to be made in Michigan, made in America." I suppose, but he doesn't want to buy them if they are. He also bragged about owning multiple SUVs when talking to the Detroit Free Press on a different occasion.

I guess that's ol' Honest John for you ...

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at April 22, 2004 10:05 PM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry is

Design & Skinning by:
m2 web studios

blog advertising


Proud Ex-Pat Member of the Bear Flag League!