Story at a glance

  • At a rally in Battle Creek last night, Trump said women had complained to him about inefficient dishwashers.
  • The president attributes this problem to environmental regulations put in place to control water supply to household kitchen appliances.
  • The dishwasher complaint is part of a larger effort to roll back Obama-era regulations.

As Congress voted to impeach President Trump in Washington, D.C., he appeared at a spirited rally in Battle Creek, Michigan. 

During a long speech, he turned his attention to another issue on his mind: dishwashers. 

The president said he'd heard complaints about environmental regulations making the kitchen appliances inefficient.

"Remember the dishwasher?" he said. "You'd press it, boom! There’d be like an explosion. Five minutes later you open it up, the steam pours out.”

"Now you press it 12 times. Women tell me ..." the president said. "You know, they give you four drops of water."

The statement quickly went viral, but this is not the first time dishwashers have made recent news. The New York Times reported a lobbying group FreedomWorks–an offshoot of a group founded by Charles and the late David Koch–to ‘Make Dishwashers Great Again’ through more lax environmental regulations. Energy-efficient light bulb regulations are also on the chopping block.

A signature feature of Trump’s presidency has been the effort to end or roll back Obama-era environmental policies to generate economic growth that many believe is hindered by green regulations.

The president described his plan as based on rolling back federal regulations and incorporating “better machinery” into the market.

Environmental advocates argue that changes to water regulations for dishwashers, if placed into effect, would have negative impacts. Modern dishwashers have improved greatly and now only use half of the water and energy of older models. Eliminating these regulations would use more water and more energy, advocates say, and cost the average household more money.

Published on Dec 19, 2019