Michigan’s Auto Sales Regulations Lead to Higher Prices

Free Press covers direct auto sales debate

Michigan may be the birthplace of the automotive industry, but it has yet to open its borders to what could be the future in vehicle innovation.

Thanks to a law signed into law by Gov. Rick Snyder in 2014, cars may only be sold through a dealership, preventing companies like Tesla from selling their products in the state because they choose to sell cars directly to consumers. The Detroit Free Press wrote about the debate and a growing effort to lift the ban and allow Michiganders to buy vehicles without an intermediary.

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"We see it as a free-enterprise issue," said Jarrett Skorup, a policy analyst with the free-market think tank Mackinac Center for Public Policy that supports changing the law. "We don't believe the government should have restrictions on how people sell things."

Restrictions, he said, limit commerce and lead to higher prices.

House Bill 5312, by Rep. Aaron Miller, R-Sturgis, would lift the ban and allow direct-to-consumer auto sales. Tesla’s closest galleries are located in Indiana and Ohio.

In December, the Mackinac Center hosted an Issues & Ideas forum on the topic, featuring Dan Crane, Associate Dean for Faculty and Research and the Frederick Paul Furth, Sr. Professor of Law at the University of Michigan. His talk is viewable here.

Read the full article in the Detroit Free Press.

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