Richmond Times-Dispatch

GMflips to California’s side in fight withTrump

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DETROIT— General Motors Co. is switching sides in the legal fight against California’s right to set its own cleanair standards, abandoning the Trump administra­tion as the president’s term nears its close.

CEOMary Barra said in a letter Monday to environmen­tal groups that GMwill no longer support the Trump administra­tion in its defense against a lawsuit over its efforts against California’s standards.

AndGMis urging other automakers to do the same.

The move is a sign that GM and other automakers are anticipati­ng big changeswhe­n President-elect Joe Biden takes office in January. Already at least one other large automaker, Toyota, said it may join GMin switching to California’s team.

In her letter, Barra wrote that the company agrees with Biden’s plan to expand electric vehicle use. Last week, GMsaid it is testing a new battery chemistry that will bring down electric vehicle costs to those of gas-powered vehicles within five years.

Barra sent the letter after a Mondaymorn­ing conversati­on with Mary Nichols, head of California’s Air Resources Board, the company said. The board is the state’s air pollution regulator.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment, and the Environmen­tal Protection Agency would say only that it was interestin­g to see the changing positions of U.S. companies.

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