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No Dice For Tesla In Texas

Texas’ Governor nixed Tesla’s push to bypass state laws for vehicle sales.

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Texas’ current laws for vehicle sales won’t change for Tesla, said Texas Governor Greg Abbott earlier this week.

The Tesla business model involves selling directly to consumers without the help of a third-party dealership. For a few years, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been trying to work around rules that prohibit this practice in Texas.

He received his answer when Gov. Abbott told Bloomberg Radio, “Texas has a very robust, very open, very effective automobile sector that seems like it’s working quite well the way it is.”

Not only does Abbott’s stance help protect local auto dealerships — who could lose business if automobile makers are allowed to circumvent them — but it also prioritizes the safety of potential Tesla drivers.

“If you’re going to have a breakdown in a car, you need to have a car dealership there to make sure that vehicle is going to be taken care of,” Abbott pointed out. “We haven’t seen that from Tesla.”

Tesla has argued that the rules simply aren’t workable for them; the Tesla business model contradicts with Texas’ laws because they don’t mass-produce their vehicles.

This isn’t the first setback for Musk and the Tesla team. After a recent failure to overturn the law in 2013, Musk “reloaded in 2015, pumping more cash into the campaign coffers of Texas politicians and more than doubling his lobbying team,” according to Jim Malewitz of The Texas Tribune.

Tesla is far from a surrender, however. Malewitz writes, “The company says it educated more consumers and lawmakers and will continue its fight to enter the country's second-largest automobile market.” However, Bloomberg noted that the company would try again in 2017 when the next regular legislative session begins.

Do you think that Tesla should be allowed to bypass state laws for vehicle sales? Comment below or tweet @MNetBridget.

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