No one I know of is claiming EVs won't ever work. It is just a fact that they cannot work anytime soon, on any scale large enough to make any difference, except by causing more problems than they cure.
Generalized rhetoric that drags in the history of other technologies is bogus, because the technologies involve different science with different practical problems.
How about a comparison with nuclear fusion, instead? Where is that at?
Oh and by the way, if the "get a horse" crowd was wrong, why is internal combustion such a problem now?
To your point, clearly EVs "work". And I agree, There's a lot of work that would need to be done in the background in battery tech (energy density, recharge times etc.), vehicle efficiency (W per mile needed) and power generation if there's any hope of reaching these goals. Certainly I think a lot of places are going to end up moving these goal posts out past the intended 2035. But definitely the battery tech and the vehicle efficiency is being worked on.
Even in the area of power generation, a lot of work is being done - including nuclear fusion and Small Modular Reactors. Not to mention work for increasing the efficiency of solar - which of course has it's own drawbacks.
Other things being worked on include carbon neutral/sustainable fuels. This terminology one has to be careful with as some companies claim to be carbon neutral simply by buying carbon credits - like that will magically somehow reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere.
So yeah, there's a lot of BS one needs to wade through. So called carbon neutral efforts by buying carbon credits, environmental and societal impacts of mining all these precious metals to support battery production (though fossil fuel extraction has it's own ugly problems as well), ability of the energy grids to supply massive increases in demand when some can barely support todays demand, etc.. But at the same time, there seems to be some that object to the tech because it is not vastly superior in every conceivable way to the current tech. I'm sure that even if there was a truly carbon neutral fuel that was a direct replacement for gasoline, there would be people objecting to it.
And you do have a point. Maybe the "get a horse" crowd WAS right. There might not be this huge concern over carbon emissions. But we might be shoulder deep in horse-$hit. Literally - as opposed to the figurative horse-$hit we have today