Another blue state unleashes electric vehicle mandate: ‘Walking the walk’

Democratic New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham issued an executive order Monday requiring every state government agency to transition to an entirely electric vehicle fleet by 2035.

Lujan Grisham – who made the announcement during remarks at the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s Symposium on the Future of Transportation – added that her government would pursue a plan to bolster electric vehicle (EV) tax credits in an effort to boost affordability. The executive order to force state agencies to adopt carbon-free vehicle fleets comes as Lujan Grisham continues pushing EV mandates statewide.

“The fact of the matter is that consumers and dealers want better access to electric vehicles, and the actions we’ve taken through Clean Car rules and now tax credits are leveling the playing field,” Lujan Grisham said. “I also took action today to make sure the state is ‘walking the walk’ when it comes to widely adopting low- and zero-emission vehicles by requiring the state fleet to be zero-emission by 2035.”

She pledged that, by 2035, “the state fleet will be 100% electric.”


The executive order, in particular, directs all departments and agencies to purchase EVs for all new car purchases. The order, though, includes exemptions for law enforcement vehicles, firefighting trucks and other heavy-duty vehicles.

Earlier this year, Lujan Grisham issued so-called Clean Car rules which mandate that automakers deliver an increasing percentage of new zero-emission cars and light duty trucks for sale in New Mexico each year beginning in 2026. Model Year 2027 vehicles sold in 2026 must be 43% zero-emissions, a percentage that progressively increases until 2031 when 82% of Model Year 2032 cars sold in the state must be zero-emissions.


“These rules will speed up much-needed investment in New Mexico’s electric vehicle and clean hydrogen fueling infrastructure, create new job opportunities and, most importantly, result in cleaner and healthier air for all New Mexicans to breathe,” the governor said in a statement on July 3.

New Mexico’s effort to ensure EV adoption over the course of the next decade comes amid a broader push nationwide. 

The federal government has issued restrictive tailpipe emissions regulations and fuel economy rules that experts say will drive the price of traditional gas-powered cars higher in coming years. And, in 2022, the Environmental Protection Agency reinstated California’s authority under the Clean Air Act to implement its own emission standards, which resulted in the state issuing a 2035 EV mandate, a move several states have mirrored.

Last month, the House passed a bill in a bipartisan 222-190 vote to strike down the federal waiver granted to California.

“This legislation is about ensuring Americans can continue choosing the vehicles that best suit their lives. It’s about making sure people have the option of driving practical, functional, and affordable cars,” House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., said in support of the bill. “And it’s about embracing the legacy of the American auto industry.”

“The answer is not through restrictive government mandates,” she continued. “Yet that is exactly what President Biden’s EPA, California, and others allies are trying to do.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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