Obama Credit for Bush Fuel Efficiency Improvement

The press’s love affair with President Obama goes so far as to give him credit for actions of his predecessor, George W. Bush. Over the last week, the New York Times and The Guardian,
Britain’s “quality leftist daily gave the President credit for working out a deal with auto makers to improve fuel efficiency by 30%.

Not quite. The Obama Administration worked out a deal with the automakers under which they would not sue if the already approved 2020 fuel efficiency standards were advanced to 2016. In fact, the 30% improvement, which was in the 2020 standards, was passed by Congress in 2007 and signed by President Bush.

This is not to deny credit to President Obama for working out the agreement with the auto industry that removed the possibility of legal challenges to advancing the Bush 30% improvement by 4 years. The government’s substantial financial stake in General Motors and Chrysler probably helped seal the deal.