The world’s auto makers sidestepped a regulatory minefield when President Obama announced new corporate average fuel economy standards May 19 in the White House Rose Garden. The old CAFE standards had achieved little beyond inspiring lawsuits, pigheadedness and seething distrust between auto makers and, ironically, coastal states that sell the most vehicles. All that changed when the new president arrived in January with a “yes we can” spirit and a ramrod mentality that forced all ...

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