The GOP-controlled House on Thursday advanced a bill that would block state bans on the sale of vehicles with internal combustion engines.

The Preserving Choice in Vehicle Purchases Act would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from granting waivers under the Clean Air Act allowing states to prohibit the sales of gas-powered passenger vehicles. It was ushered through the chamber by 214 members of the House's Republican majority and eight Democrats. It was opposed by 190 Democrats.

Eight Republicans and 14 Democrats did not vote.

The bill will now go to the Democrat-controlled Senate, where its chances of passing are far lower than in the House.

The bill targets California's ban on the sale of new gas-powered passenger vehicles by 2035, along with the emissions policies of 17 other states. Rep. John Joyce, a New York Republican and one of the bill's sponsors, said in a floor speech that an EPA waiver is currently "the only thing standing in the way of California's implementation of this policy." 

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"We cannot expect vehicle manufacturers to build one car in California and another one for Pennsylvania," Joyce said.

Rep. Mike Levin, D-Calif., said the bill would force the EPA to revoke waivers going back to 2013, which would create "chaos and confusion for the entire auto industry." 

"This bill attacks the Clean Air Act and the longstanding authority of states to make their own decisions to keep their air clean and climate pollution low," Levin said.

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