Facing declined sales, shifts in consumer preference, and the steep cost of Trump's tariffs on imports of foreign steel and aluminum among other things, General Motors closed multiple factories in 2019 including a plant in Lordstown, Ohio that became an optical centerpiece of Trump's failed pledge to revive the Rust Belt.
The Trump regime sought to keep the Lordstown factory open by providing a loan to a dubious electric automaker that may never be able to follow through on their plans, but the loan the company would need to purchase and retool the factory in the first place won't be available if Trump gets his way.
Trump's budget proposal for fiscal 2021 would end the loan program that would make the Lordstown deal possible.
Why? Because it was once used by a famous or shall we say 'infamous' solar panel producer.
The company, Lordstown Motors Corp., is seeking a $200 million loan from the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. The Energy Department initiative doled out billions of dollars to help companies retool factories to build advanced electric vehicles, including a $465 million loan to Tesla Inc. for its Model S in 2010, which the company repaid in 2013, according to the department’s website. [...]
According to a budget summary obtained by Bloomberg News, Trump’s fiscal year 2021 budget calls for canceling the Energy Department program and a loan guarantee program that have been under fire from conservatives after it famously backed a half-billion-dollar loan guarantee to failed solar-panel maker Solyndra LLC.
I know it's been a long time so, for those who are just joining us, there actually was a time in recent history when Republicans led by former Oversight Committee Chairman Darrel Issa spent two years holding congressional hearings on the collapse of a single recipient of clean-energy loans; a company called Solyndra. And they kept talking about it long after the hearings stopped.
They're evidently still talking about it literally a decade later.
I don't expect Congress will agree to end the loan program anytime soon, but this is such a glorious demonstration of the bottomless incoherence of Republican policy-making. It is 'chef's kiss.'