Skip to main content
Bridge Michigan
Michigan’s nonpartisan, nonprofit news source

Kamala Harris touts EV transition loans in Detroit

Vice President Kamala Harris speaking into the microphone
Vice President Kamala Harris returned to Detroit on Monday as part of a tour touting federal programs tackling Black economic inequities. ( Screenshot)
  • In Detroit speech, Vice President Kamala Harris touts federal funding to help smaller manufacturers in the transition toward electric vehicles 
  • Michigan visit part of Harris’ Economic opportunity for all’ tour highlighting programs designed to reduce economic inequities for Black Americans 
  • Republicans have predicted economic disaster should the country embrace electric vehicles

Vice President Kamala Harris was in Detroit on Monday to tout federal funds to assist automotive suppliers in their conversion to manufacturing for electric vehicles, along with programs aimed at tackling Black economic inequities.

“The strength of America's economy is also based on the strength of America's supply chains,” Harris said. “This investment will help to keep our auto supply chains here in America, which strengthens America's economy, overall and keep those jobs here in Detroit.”


Democratic President Joe Biden’s administration is offering $50 million to small and medium-size parts manufacturers for facility upgrades and workforce training to aid in the transition, according to the White House, along with $50 million to boost supplier productivity.


Harris’ Michigan visit was the latest chapter in a back-and-forth between the Biden administration and former President Donald Trump, the presumed Republican presidential nominee who has long criticized efforts to transition the country toward electric vehicles.

Last week, in a Saginaw County speech to Michigan voters, Trump claimed  a transition to EVs will “rip out your auto jobs and send them immediately to China.” 

But Biden campaign and administration officials have stressed that despite new federal emissions rules, there is no mandate to purchase an electric vehicle, and they are committed to incentivizing U.S. manufacturing for their production. 

“Bottom line, Michigan: you guys are killing it in terms of job creation, in terms of the electrification of the auto industry, in terms of the UAW, in terms of union workers,” U.S. Energy Secretary and former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm said Monday in Detroit, where she joined the vice president. 

The event, held at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, was part of Harris’ tour to highlight federal programs aimed at reducing economic inequities for Black Americans, including access to capital for business owners, homeownership initiatives, health care and student loan forgiveness. 

“Since 2019, Black wealth is up 60%, so President Biden and I are clear: These are not only our accomplishments, they are yours,” Harris said in the speech, which was organized as an official White House event. “It is the result of your drive, your creativity and your power.”


Republicans criticized Harris’ visit, arguing pro-EV policies are simply a one in a suite of ways Biden and Democrats have hurt Michiganders economically. 

“From soaring inflation on everyday goods, to record-breaking gas prices, to prioritizing EV production over Midwest autoworkers, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have failed Michiganders at every turn,” RNC Spokesperson Rachel Lee said in a statement. “Harris’s grandstanding will not change the fact that Michigan families and workers are suffering.” 

Biden, who is seeking re-election, is due back in Michigan for a May 19 campaign speech to an NAACP Detroit Branch dinner.  Polls suggest Trump holds a narrow — and narrowing — lead over Biden in Michigan.

How impactful was this article for you?

Only donate if we've informed you about important Michigan issues

See what new members are saying about why they donated to Bridge Michigan:

  • “In order for this information to be accurate and unbiased it must be underwritten by its readers, not by special interests.” - Larry S.
  • “Not many other media sources report on the topics Bridge does.” - Susan B.
  • “Your journalism is outstanding and rare these days.” - Mark S.

If you want to ensure the future of nonpartisan, nonprofit Michigan journalism, please become a member today. You, too, will be asked why you donated and maybe we'll feature your quote next time!

Pay with VISA Pay with MasterCard Pay with American Express Pay with PayPal Donate Now