As huge storms battered the northeastern United States over the past week, President Obama noted how much harder it was for poor people to get to work. He called a press conference to highlight the growing garage inequality in the country. His opening remarks articulated that there is “a dangerous and growing garage inequality which produces a lack of mobility that has jeopardized middle-class America.”
Noting how many poor people could not store their cars in warm garages and needed to dig out of the deep snow, Obama said “that success shouldn’t depend on being born into wealth or privilege, having a garage or a car with seat warmers,” and that storms like the ones over the past few weeks “decrease mobility and pose a fundamental threat to the American Dream.”
Obama has proposed “Promise Zones in urban and rural communities where we’re going to support local efforts focused on a national goal of getting everyone an enclosed parking spot.”
Valerie Jarrett said the situation was “ridiculous” and that poor people need to better appreciate that “their being discriminated against and the reasons for insufficient parking and enclosed structures in poor neighborhoods” is rich privilege. She has recommended making it mandatory for all cars to have seats that can reach 34.5 degrees Celsius by 2022. Cars without seat-warmers can be traded in under a new “Cash for Cold Assets” program.
Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx said that he was looking for Congress to authorize millions for public heated garage infrastructure.
Obama added that as recently as the 1950s, “the gap between the most expensive car and the least expensive car was 7 to 1. Today that gap is 70 to 1.”
Obama has said he will likely fund the ObamaCar programs with an excise tax of 2.3% on manufacturers of tires and garages, and cars over $65,000.
Lobbyists for the shovel industry are attempting to repeal the law.