A bill that would prevent Tesla from selling cars in Michigan under its direct sales model has landed with a thud on the desk of Republican Governor Rick Snyder, and he's got six days to choose between pissing off State dealers or running afoul of his Republican colleagues.
The bill, H.B. 5606, was introduced in May by Republican rep Aric Nesbitt, but originally it had nothing to do with Tesla. The bill was written to prevent franchised dealers from gouging customers with random fees, but when the bill arrived in the Senate on October 1, text was added to prevent companies – well, Tesla – from selling directly to consumers in the state.
There was no debate and no public comment, and the bill passed the senate unanimously on October 2 before going back to the House and approved 106-to-1. And now it's waiting for the Governor's signature.
That puts Snyder in a tough position. He can either approve the bill and keep his dealer constituents happy or veto the legislation and run counter to the recent stance by other Republicans – including New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio – all of which have come in favor of Tesla's business model. Not an ideal position when gearing up to mid-terms.
Full text of the bill below.