- Aug 3, 2007
Voters want better gas mileage, and sooner
In a survey of 30 congressional districts in the Midwest and Southeast, it was "found that nearly nine out of ten voters want mandatory increases in fuel efficiency." In fact, to be specific, they want the House of Representatives to pass the same CAFE standards as the Senate passed two months ago: 35 mpg for cars and trucks by 2020, and chose that over a slightly less strict competing bill. Even more startling: 85% of the respondents wanted compliance brought up to 2018.
Having said that, we can't help but think the results are slightly skewed. If the survey question wasn't entirely loaded, there were at least a couple of rounds in the cylinder. Essentially, respondents were asked to agree with one of two statements: carmakers should not have to make cars with better gas mileage because if they do it will make everything worse for America and you won't be able to buy an SUV, or, carmakers should have to make cars with better gas mileage because it will make everything better for America and you'll save money and we won't rely so much on foreign oil. Let me see...
According to the survey, voters apparently saw no negative consequences from mandating higher CAFE standards, with up to 81% believing that vehicles would remain just as powerful, just as safe, workers wouldn't lose their jobs, and the need to innovate would invigorate the economy. There is undoubtedly a desire for more fuel efficient vehicles, with a lot of room on all sides for the various parties to come up with workable solutions that benefit the most and harm the least. There could also, however, be surveys that do a better job of highlighting that fact.
[Source: Green Car Congress]