Pete Buttigieg: ‘Cars Are Going Electric, With Or Without Us’
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 20: U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg testifies during a hearing before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee at Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill on September 20, 2023 in Washington, DC. The committee held a hearing on "Oversight of the Department of Transportation's Policies and Programs." (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty Images

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Wednesday that cars were “going electric” whether the people were ready to go along with them or not.

Buttigieg made the comments during a CNN appearance — in response to a question about President Joe Biden’s visit to speak with striking auto workers on the United Auto Workers (UAW) picket lines in Michigan.


The Transportation Secretary referenced Biden’s appearance in Michigan and the fact that auto workers have voiced concerns about the transition to electric vehicles — and where that could leave their jobs moving forward.

Buttigieg began with a callback to his hometown of South Bend, Indiana, where he name-dropped two local UAW chapters before pivoting to talk about the economy and the transition to electric vehicles.

“Look, I come from South Bend, Indiana,” he said. “It’s the home of UAW Local 5 and UAW Local 9, I saw how the past generation of union auto jobs helped build the middle class build communities like the one I grew up in.”

“I also saw what happened when those factories closed,” he continued. “What the UAW is trying to do right now is to make sure that this next chapter of auto industry, which, let’s be very clear, these cars are going electric with or without us.”


While President Biden was on the picket line in Michigan, Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) made an appearance at a UAW protest in Wentzville, Missouri — where he took aim at the Biden administration’s efforts to force the auto industry to go electric “with or without” the workers.

“I’d call on the Biden Admin right now: Cancel all of your terrible electric mandates that are killing these guys and taking their jobs,” Hawley said. “And these companies … need to invest in America and in American workers.”


RELATED: Obama’s ‘Car Czar’ Blasts Biden For Joining Auto Worker Picket Line

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