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Congressman Says Ahnuld Tells Mich. "Drop Dead!"

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Congressman Joe Knollenberg of Michigan isn’t taking kindly to recent attacks on the domestic auto industry by California’s politicians intent on boosting their green credentials. His response—a Web campaign and billboard that rise to the “Big3Defense.”

On the Web site,, Knollenberg accuses Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) and Senator Barbara Boxer of California with a gut punch to the Detroit-based U.S. auto industry. And he implicates the President in the move against Michigan, too:

“They want to impose job-killing increases in CAFE standards on our domestic auto industry,” Knollenberg’s site says. “This will benefit Toyota and Honda and lead to fewer jobs and declining home values in Michigan and throughout the Great Lakes region.

“President Bush has indicated he's supportive of a significant CAFE increase, which would carry a price tag of $85 billion for the domestic auto industry. The proposals being pushed by Schwarzenegger, Pelosi and the Californians would inflict worse damage on Michigan's economy and the manufacturing sector of America.”

The site will help educate Michiganders about the potential impact of legislation on the state’s auto industry. But it’s the billboard Knollenberg has paid for that’s getting attention from TV’s Neil Cavuto, among others. The billboard, above, says the Governator is telling Michigan to “drop dead,” referring to his recent comments favoring big hikes in the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards.

The California politicos could kill more Michigan jobs, Knollenberg says on his Web site. And in the process, “Detroit is getting unfairly bullied in this debate over energy independence and global warming.

“The professional environmentalists and their political allies are attempting to demonize America's auto companies and make pickup trucks seem as bad as cigarettes,” the site says.

“Let’s fight back and show Arnold Schwarzenegger and the rest of the nation that Detroiters are not girly men,” Knollenberg says in a final plea for donations and support.

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