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Orrin Hatch – Plug-In Electric Vehicles 2008

As the author of the 2005 Clear Act that provides incentives for hybrids and alternative fuel vehicles, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) clearly understands and articulates clean energy independence.

After knuckle bumping Brookings’ conference chair David Sandalow as he took the stage at the start of the second and final day of the conference, Senator Hatch laid it clearly on the line, exclaiming his appreciation for attendees who “are at the cutting edge of some of the most important technology in our country’s history.”

He then briefly fawned over the Tesla that was sitting just outside the conference hall …

A half an hour or so before the Senator’s opening remarks, I was doing my own fawning over the beautiful black electric sports car (the CEO’s personal car, no less). I had the good fortune to speak with Tesla’s director of corporate development, Diarmuid O’Connell.

Diarmuid had just shared the news that Tesla is now producing two cars per day, as it works its way up to a goal of ten cars per day, when out of the corner of my eye, I noticed a small group of people stroll up.

The next thing I know, Orrin Hatch is knuckle bumping … me!

The Tesla clearly caught the Senator’s eye. He mentioned his appreciation for the auto maker’s tribute to namesake Nikola Tesla and asked if all Googlers had their own electric sports car.

After good bit of laughter, Senator Hatch inquired about the price. Upon learning of the low six-figure price tag, the Senator mentioned “I guess I’ll have to wait until I’m out of Congress before I’ll be able to afford one …”

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