By on February 2, 2012

Foreign OEMs put on a dog and pony show at the Washington D.C. auto show in anticipation of President Obama’s visit, but were ultimately snubbed when the President decided to check out some American iron instead.

Bloomberg reports that Honda, Toyota and other foreign car makers flew in executives from across the country and brought in their most fuel-efficient cars at the request of the White House. While Obama checked out a display of American cars, including a Dodge Dart, a Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, a Chevrolet Silverado, a Jeep Grand Cherokee, a Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1, a Ford C-Max Energi and a Chevrolet Malibu, execs from the foreign OEMs waited in a “bullpen” for a chance to talk to Obama, and answer his questions about their products.

But they never got face time with the Commander-In-Chief. While a Honda FCX and a Kia Optima Hybrid were on hand (brought in specially for the visit), Obama only paid attention to the American brands – and some of their less-than-efficient products. While Obama was ostensibly checking out the newest wares of the automakers that got bailout money, many of the foreign OEMs have invested a lot of money in American manufacturing (as much as $43 billion, according to a trade group known as The Association of Global Automakers) – an economic sector in dire need of rejuvenation, and one that surely adds more value than a Facebook IPO.

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113 Comments on “Obama Snubs Foreign OEMs At D.C. Auto Show...”


  • avatar
    86er

    Are we going to start demanding that whoever the Prime Minister of Japan is this week ought to check out the VW section at the Tokyo Auto Show?

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      “Bloomberg reports that Honda, Toyota and other foreign car makers flew in executives from across the country and brought in their most fuel-efficient cars at the request of the White House.”

      Read much? If anyone else acted like the POSIC, you’d be able to see what a vile bag of scum he was.

      • 0 avatar
        another_pleb

        Those inductive encoder manufacturers from Switzerland are a bunch of feckin’ eejits alright.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Obama was wrong in this case. He asked specifically for something and did not even acknowledge the fact that the carmakers delivered on the request. That was the Dick Move.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Agree with golden2husky on this one. The foreign OEMs did respond to a request from the White House and were snubbed. The OEMs should not take that lightly. Had Obama snubbed the American OEMs we wouldn’t ever hear the end of it from the UAW.

        But I wonder if Obama only looked at the UAW-made offerings from the domestic manufacturers, or if he also looked at the “American” iron that’s made in Mexico and Canada?

        There’s merit in the transplants moving more of their production to Mexico since all of the domestic manufacturers have already done so. Mazda will go there when it ceases co-production on the Ford assembly lines. Nissan will increase production there as well. Maybe Honda and Toyota will also follow.

        That would satisfy the UAW and actually result in greater profits for the domestic brands. The Obama administration clearly does not appreciate what the foreigners are doing for America with their plants here. If he did, he would not snub the foreign OEMs which provide jobs for tax-paying Americans who helped bail out Government Motors and Chrysler, and who help fund the $1.3B bribe it cost the US for Fiat to take Chrysler’s dead carcass off our hands.

        Did Obama check out Chrysler’s offerings? If he did then he checked out the offerings from a foreign OEM because Chrysler is now a subdivision of Fiat, a foreign company, providing UAW jobs to Americans in America.

      • 0 avatar
        VanillaDude

        Obama impresses only those worthy of his attention – himself.

    • 0 avatar

      Obama used to have a Chrysler 300c. I could easily DUST HIM in a race with my SRT8. So long as Secret service doesn’t shoot out my tires.

    • 0 avatar
      Secret Hi5

      “The foreign OEMs did respond to a request from the White House and were snubbed. The OEMs should not take that lightly.”

      It’s laughable to think that corporations will do something or not do something because of the POTUS. Their decision$ are driven by the bottom line. Is Toyota going to throw a tantrum because of this “snub” and do something stupid? I hope not. It would be cutting off the nose to spite the face.

  • avatar
    Advance_92

    So he’s not apologizing for America, after all?

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    SCANDAL!

    All we need is a picture of flaming Chevy Volt, sitting on top of a Toyota Prius with a gas pedal stuck in an ill-sized all weather floor mat, and a flaming Ford F-150 due to a bad cruise control relay and we’d have a hum-dinger of a thing to gritch about. Maybe Obama could be seen holding some superglue in one hand, used to tamper with the Prius gas pedal, and some wire cutters in another. MUWHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

    I’m voting Cthulhu in 2012 – why go with a lesser evil when you can go all the way baby!

  • avatar
    86er

    Before anyone gives me any guff about there being no “foreign” and “domestic” autos in North America, I’m rather inclined to agree, but this is the framework under which this news clip was written.

  • avatar
    chuckrs

    How much of an effort would it have taken to spend at least a little time with the ‘foreigners’?
    Calculated insults – a part of the Chicago way.

    • 0 avatar
      fvfvsix

      My thoughts exactly… People really ought to be able to see through this crap by now, but they probably won’t.

      This move is straight out of the playbook. Nothing more than a big game for these politicians, both Dem and Repub.

    • 0 avatar
      Advance_92

      Not at all. If this was the ‘Chicago way’ someone would have driven a bulldozer over those cars. Anyone whining about Obama being a Chicago politician really doesn’t know Chicago politics very well, let alone Obama’s role in them.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      I think “calculated insults” is exactly what it is. However, such strategies typically backfire when they are exposed (as seen in these comments). And that points to an even worse problem in politics today–he doesn’t care what we think.

  • avatar
    nearprairie

    Obama and The Democats didn’t sing again, did they?
    Otherwise, I’m glad our POTUS is a car guy. More to the point, I’m just glad he can spell c-a-r.

  • avatar
    RegistrationPlease

    Could you imagine the uproar if Bush did what Obambi did today?

  • avatar
    sitting@home

    The guy talks to suits 23 and a half hours a day, can’t we give him 30 minutes to have a look over some cars for once ? He is (despite some claims) an American Male, so why shouldn’t a Mustang be high on his priorities of things to check out ?

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Agreed. What did you expect a long look at the exciting new Camry? The fact that the Volt isn’t on the list says enough for me.

    • 0 avatar
      FromaBuick6

      Oh, please. He’s the POTUS. The leader of the free world, yet he gets to spend a lot more time on the golf course than I do.

      His job is to run the country, not kick back and check out cars while the press fawns over what a cool dude he is.

      • 0 avatar
        forraymond

        He is Our President, just like W was our president, except W took more vacations than any other President – plus he squandered our surplus on two nonsensical wars and tax cuts for the “job creators.”

        10 years of tax cuts and I don’t see jobs being create in America.

        10 years of war and we are not safer.

        How bad is Obama after three years of sweeping up a mess?

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      No one is complaining that he looks at cars, or that he kicks back occasionally, or even that he is most interested in the domestics.

      The problem is how his staff specifically requested the others to be there, and then left them hanging. If he hadn’t done that, there would be no issue. That’s a common move to communicate to them that they are inferior–to put them ‘in their place.’

  • avatar
    replica

    He did have a Chrysler 300 before, so we do share a passion for burning up dinosaurs.

  • avatar
    stryker1

    I can sympathize. I mean, that Shelby looks fuggin sexy in grabber blue. Probably thinking “The instant this president business is over, I’m getting one of these.”

  • avatar

    And if he had spent all his time speaking with the foreign OEMs there would be less than thinly veiled attacks pointing out how it was proof that he hated America and was too apologetic of it.

    The President showed his love of American iron. Sounds like the right move to me. The foreign OEMs are building here because they like money. A minor snub from the commander-in-chief isn’t going to change that. It’s not like they are going to pull out because he didn’t do more to make them feel like they were part of the “in” crowd.

    How is this even news?

  • avatar
    acuraandy

    I just can’t read this guy (POTUS). First, whilst a Senator, he owned a 300C. Then, whilst running for President, he sold it in favor of an Escape Hybrid(!?)

    Then, a few short weeks ago, he rejects a proposal to build a new`oil pipeline from Canada to Texas (that BTW cost about 20k immediate badly needed jobs, ahem). Which invariably would’ve lowered crude prices, improved the job market through trickle-down economics, and made cars like this more accessible to the ‘masses’.

    Now, we get pictures of him stroking the hood/sitting in a 500hp Shelby Mustang? I think he needs his Paxil Rx refilled.

    OR WORSE, he’s of the mindset that only the elites should own cars.

    • 0 avatar

      You are living in a fantasy world if you think that pipeline would have had any impact on what they charge us for petrol at the pump in the US.

      • 0 avatar
        acuraandy

        Supply and demand. Spare me the ‘big oil’ conspiracies, crude oil is a world market. More of it = lower price; especially if it doesn’t have to pass through a canal with Iran on one side and Israel on the other.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “Supply and demand.”

        That’s nice, but the US is lacking in supply.

        The US uses more oil than it has, and it uses about 20% of the world’s supply. There are two basic ways that we could become energy independent:

        1. Cut our consumption by about half
        2. Consume the same amounts per capita, while killing off half of our population.

        I’m pretty sure that both of those alternatives aren’t feasible. We can’t drill our way out of it, since there isn’t enough oil.

        “crude oil is a world market”

        That’s absolutely right. Since you understand that, then you ought to know that your thesis completely contradicts this. The US can’t possibly use production to influence the world price of oil by any meaningful degree. We can’t possibly produce enough of it, fast enough, for that to happen.

    • 0 avatar
      mzr

      Extensive eminent domain seizures of farmland, a extremely dirty supply of sour crude, and a pipe guaranteed to leak its contents on said farmland. That was a good decision.

      • 0 avatar
        replica

        Seizures of farmland? Lol, I assume they’ll pay for the lease for the mineral rights to pipe under private land, just like any other oil job. I’d like to see a credible source for this “guaranteed” leaking pipeline.

      • 0 avatar
        mzr

        http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/story/2011/06/07/nwt-enbridge-pipeline-spill.html

        http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/oil-spills-intensify-focus-on-new-pipeline-proposals/article2015347/

        One of those pipelines had only been in operation for a year. Some of the leaks hadn’t been detected until the spills had been noticed by a Mk I Eyeball.

        You want to run a pipeline through the Ogallala aquifer? One that would spring a leak that wouldn’t be noticed for some time. The leak detection doesn’t work on small leaks, the first link was a leak was was pinhole sized.

    • 0 avatar
      FromaBuick6

      The answer’s simple: He’s a disingenuous SOB. Big V8s for him, federally-mandated smug mobiles for the rest of us. But he bought a hybrid to fool the electorate into thinking he gives a crap, so everything’s swell.

      Too bad the “Annoy a liberal, vote for Newt” Tea Party crowd is dead set on handing this creep the easiest reelection since 1972.

      • 0 avatar
        gottacook

        While I’m gratified that most of the commenters here who are expressing anti-Obama views are not the usual names, I would like to point out that (speaking of 1972) it was Nixon who was the real creep. I was around then, but there are plenty of records (and recordings) for those who were not.

        Oh, and acuraandy, what canal is it that has “Iran on one side and Israel on the other”? Did you mean the Suez Canal (which has been Egypt on both sides for decades)? Or did you mean the Strait of Hormuz, the passage between the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea surrounded by Iran and various Arab oil-producing countries? In either case your facts are wrong.

      • 0 avatar
        FromaBuick6

        @ gottacook: I thought the CREEP was the guys that broke into the Watergate…

      • 0 avatar
        acuraandy

        @gottacook: Forgive my gaff. It’s that public edu-ma-cation kicking in…

        And i’m not really ‘anti-Obama’. I’m ‘anti-piss on the working class’. He just happens to epitomize ‘piss on the working class’.

        I’ll try not to get as political anymore, guys. All of you are right. This is a car blog. If I want to spout off politically, i’ll do my best to relegate it to my Facebook. :)

      • 0 avatar
        NulloModo

        acuraandy –

        I don’t see any pissing going on by trying to make sure healthcare is available and affordable to everyone, for trying to raise tax rates and close loopholes that allow the extremely wealthy to pay less of a percentage of their total income in taxes than the average working Joe, for pushing regulation to keep credit card companies and banks from screwing customers whose balances have less than six zeroes, or for savings tens of thousands (if not more) American jobs through TARP.

        I do see a man who is far to willing to bend and buckle to the demands of the GOP, who listens far too much to the whining of RIAA and MPAA, and who hasn’t lived up to the image of a liberal bulldog leading a paradigm shift in our country towards progress and change that many of us who voted for him were counting on.

        There is plenty to complain about regarding Obama, but I don’t see any way he has been ‘pissing on’ the working class.

        As far as the events at the car show go – he was damned if he did, damned if he didn’t. If he spent his time hobnobbing with the import managers he’d be crucified for being anti-American. If he spends his time looking at the products of the D3 the haters will call it pandering. If he didn’t bother to even show up he would be accused of not caring about one of our country’s biggest industries. My guess is he would have at least done a fly-by through the import-manager bullpen, but my guess is it was just poor communication between whoever set it up and whoever made his schedule.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        gottacook, Nixon may have been a creep but at least he was instrumental in ending the Viet Nam conflict, something I am intimately familiar with having served there.

        No, the worst president during my 65 years of living was Carter, up to now. Obama beats him as being the worst president during my existence because my standard of living has been going down the toilet for the past three years. How I long for the days of Clinton and Shrub!

        But I do agree with FromaBuick6 in that the Republicans have no candidate that a majority will vote for, thereby handing Obama the easiest re-election victory since Eisenhower. Get set for four more years! We’ll be hearing that a lot.

      • 0 avatar
        acuraandy

        @nullomodo-

        -breaking my new ‘politically castrated’ rule-

        Apparently I need to clarify: I am all about people having affordable healthcare. I think TARP was a travesty. I also think that considering my meager income, I shouldn’t have to pay for some gang-banger in Chicago’s condoms, or healthcare premium. I ALSO think the GOP is currently (and has been since about 2000, some would argue longer) FULL OF SHIT.

        The problem is, so are the Dems. As far as i’m concerned, throw them ALL out of office and start over, regardless of political affiliation, the entire system IMO is corrupt. From what cars we drive, to what we eat, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WHAT LIGHT BULBS WE PUT IN OUR HOMES!

        I’m pretty conservative, but not a rubber stamp for neither the Limbaugh-sized elephant in the room nor the jackass. Just because certain people need to be led like sheep because they are too stupid (and I don’t necessarily mean you) doesn’t mean I do to ensure the survival of the human race. Just sayin’…:)

        I could go on, but my blood pressure is rising and my beer is empty.

        -reinstating political neutrality…now.-

      • 0 avatar
        NulloModo

        acuraandy –

        Heh, I actually agree with most of that. More and more the differences between the two dominant parties are just how anyone spins the same things that guys on both sides do.

        If our elected officials were more concerned with actually helping make the lives of those who elect them better, instead of pointing fingers across the aisle and campaigning for their next term from the first day they take office perhaps what cars the President looked at during an auto show wouldn’t even be a news story.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        Arguing rep v. dem is like arguing Coke v. Pepsi.

        Sure, you have your preference, but at the end of the day, they’re pretty much the same thing.

    • 0 avatar
      icemilkcoffee

      He bought the Chrysler 300 back in 2004, back when gas was $1.95 a gallon (or thereabouts). He sold it in 2007, after the post Katrina oil schock woke most people up (Note I said ‘most’ people- you can’t wake up people who refuses to be awaken).

      Also- what is the purpose of the pipeline? to refine that oil at a TX PORT. Why do you refine the oil at a PORT? Ding ding ding we have a winner- to ship that oil somewhere else! The US of A is already a gasoline EXPORTER under Obama. We have plenty of gas. There is no shortage of gas. Just a shortage of profits for our oil companies.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        If he responded to $3.00 gas by immediately trading in a three year old luxury car and eating $12-15,000 in depreciation then he’s an economic imbecile. A conclusion that the past three years of national hara kiri would largely support.

        You know perfectly well that the real reason he traded it in was political showmanship.

      • 0 avatar
        Herm

        The refineries at the Gulf are specialized to refine the nasty sour crude from Venezuela.. the same stuff that comes out of the Canadian oil sands. That was the only reason to pipe it down there, to get more use of existing equipment with declining Venezuelan sour production (nationalizing the industry was a disaster). In any case they are going to put the nasty stuff in trains and ship it down in big solid blobs of tar.

        The world is getting pretty desperate when refineries actually want to refine bitumen.. its solid at room temperature and rock hard at Canadian temperatures.

    • 0 avatar

      Andy,

      it’s all here on the 300C and the escape:
      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/the-candidates-choice/

      Uh, those 20k jobs are VERY temporary and probably not that numerous. Once the thing is built, most of those jobs are gone.

      Honda Dave

      • 0 avatar
        acuraandy

        ‘Uh, those 20k jobs are VERY temporary and probably not that numerous. Once the thing is built, most of those jobs are gone.’

        A valid point, Dave. However, tell that to the guy who hasn’t had a job in a year and a half. (For the record: i’ve managed to hold onto mine.)

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        The ridiculous, make believe world of liberals where issuing foodstamps creates jobs but building heavy industry somehow doesn’t.

        Of course jobs building the pipe disappear the day it’s finished being built.

        The day it’s finished being built is also the day refiners begin processing twenty million gallons of oil a day.

        That’s around 5 billion dollars a year in new economic output which will indirectly employ tens of thousands of Americans and that will last as long as the Alberta oil fields do.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        I believe the amount of oil we refine is going to be the amount that the market needs. This pipeline won’t flood more into the market, rather it will displace other oil imports. I have no problem with that. Also, if the pipeline can transport the oil more effectively, it should reduce some of the overhead costs, but I doubt it would be noticeable at the pump.

        All the jobs don’t disappear when the pipeline is finished. There will also be work maintaining it. However, the impact from that will be less. When the recession started, there was a big push for infrastructure projects. Those are no different than this–put people who are looking for work to work building stuff that will help us when the recession is over. Few complained about that. Also, we have a data point about the economic impact of building a pipeline–the trans-Alaskan pipeline. Building it had a large positive & sustained impact on the economy. I don’t believe this will be as beneficial, but it is clear to me that it will still be positive.

        If it doesn’t go to the gulf coast, where would you refine it? There hasn’t been a new refinery built in decades. (The regulations are as burdensome as nuclear plants.) The capabilities already exist at those refineries. Why are refineries located at ports? They produce more than just gasoline, and they require more raw material than just crude. Ports make it much easier & cheaper to get and ship all those other products.

        The decision to deny it a permit wasn’t a decision based on the plan’s merits. It was simple politics. It was a message to rebuke/punish the republicans for their actions on the SS vote (they forced the issue in hopes it would make Obama look bad). It was a opportunity to appear to be an environmentalist. (The route isn’t really what they care about; if leakage/contamination is the concern, then you update the specs to include better seals, double barriers, stricter QC/inspection, etc. Conversely, if the route really was the problem, then they would not have simply rejected it; rather, they would be actively working with them to map a route that satisfies their requirements. I’ve worked with enough govt regulators to know that if you are doing something they want done, they will tell you what you need to do to pass.)

    • 0 avatar
      forraymond

      The location of that pipeline is not finalized. He wants a plan in place before approving it.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Maybe TTAC could have a “caption the picture” contest.

    Here is my submission.

    “I wonder if this comes in armor plating.”

  • avatar
    TheHammer

    It’s Bush’s fault!

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    “Obama Snubs Foreign OEMs At D.C. Auto Show…”

    The man used to own a Hemi powered 300, we’re surprised by what cars he sought out because?

    God forbid I ever became president I’m sure if I did this some news outlet or blogger or commenter would likely say… “Well he has owned a V8 Cutlass and a F150 Heritage so we really shouldn’t be surprised by this.

    Now it was a bit rude to not go visit the guys in the bullpen, regardless of your party affiliation.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    So much for reaching across the aisle.

    Just what is an ‘American’ or ‘foreign’ car again?

    If one says that a Mexican-built Ford is ‘American’, and an Alabama-built Hyundai is ‘foreign’, then all the rhetoric about outsourcing jobs is just BS. Personally, I’ve come to believe that both scenarios create jobs – in both countries – by producing the lowest-cost product for the markets they serve. This is why companies built plants outside their home country.

    • 0 avatar
      Ryoku75

      Maybe we should start saying “Mexican-American”, the former being where the car was built, and the latter being where the car was sold.

      Rednecks would like that though, under ‘dem terms ‘dose dang Toyotas would still be “American”.

    • 0 avatar
      Educator(of teachers)Dan

      Right a job for an American is a job for an American. We can argue about corporate taxes or profit until we’re blue in the face but the guy in Alabama who helps build a Sonata appreciates the $ that puts food on his table and a roof over his head. I would feel no more guilt about buying a Sonata than buying a Fusion built in Flatrock, MI.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        +1

        If we’ve learned anything, it’s that what matters, in terms of economic success you can feel, is bettering the lot of those people, not increasing GDP while hollowing out their earning power.

        So in that sense, yes, it’s better to employ more people in your locality and “send the profits to Japan/Korea/Whatever” because you tend to notice two thousand employed middle-class taxpayers more than you would a couple rich guys six states away.

    • 0 avatar
      forraymond

      Outsourcing is promoted by our tax scheme. Talk about cutting your nose off to spite your face.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    If I were at acar show with a Mustang, a Challenger, a Corvette, a Kia, and a Honda FCX I would’nt give the Kia nor the Honda a 2nd glance.

    Then again, what Kia even deserves a 2nd glance?

  • avatar
    NormSV650

    Sorry, no union votes to buy with foreign manufacturers. Next!

    Got to love election year politics.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Had the president devoted his time to caressing Volts and Claritys and Priuses, instead of admiring Shelbys, then the usual suspects around here would be screaming about Obama being an eco-weenie. Let’s face it — some of you who post here are just looking for excuses to bitch and whine.

    Assuming that the story is accurate, then it sounds as if some staffers may have screwed up. It would appear that someone inside the White House wanted to turn it into a green press conference, but Obama opted to tilt it toward something closer to the economy. It is an election year, after all, and the economy is more important to the voters than is the environment. It’s just the game of politics; everyone plays it.

    • 0 avatar
      gslippy

      Obama claims to be an eco-weenie, so spending a moment with the cars you mentioned would bolster this image.

      But if he’s pandering to the ‘buy American’ crowd, then I wouldn’t say it’s an economic play as much as political. And as you say, all politicians play this game.

      His love for the Volt is well-documented, so overlooking it may have either been a mistake or simply a matter of time management.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “But if he’s pandering to the ‘buy American’ crowd”

        Partly. I would guess that this was more of a “economy getting back on track, thanks to me” message. The election is only nine months away, and the economy is always the most important issue in American presidential elections.

        “His love for the Volt is well-documented, so overlooking it may have either been a mistake or simply a matter of time management.”

        As a president, he has minions who book up his calendar. I would guess that there was some sort of disconnect between what he wanted and what they thought that he wanted. It’s not as if Obama was setting his own appointments and giving out the invitations himself.

        And it was an auto show, so I would presume that at least some of these allegedly snubbed individuals and/or their cars would have been there, anyway. Don’t overlook the possibility that they may be trying to get their share of spin from this, too. Auto shows are marketing and media events, after all.

      • 0 avatar
        jkross22

        “I would guess that there was some sort of disconnect between what he wanted and what they thought that he wanted. ”

        Everyone, carry on. PCH has said it was a disconnect, so let’s just take him at his word. He knows all.

  • avatar
    jkumpire

    “Do as I say, not as I do”

    That is our current President’s attitude in a lot of things, what else is new?

    Nothing new here, move along…

  • avatar
    ra_pro

    I hate Mustangs and everything they stand for but the color on that Shelby(?), just fabulous, could imagine myself, being the president and all, buying one just for the color.

    Typical Obama stuff, very difficult to read and spin, did he snub “furrenns”, did he just just enjoy the “mrican” iron? Hard to tell.

    • 0 avatar
      acuraandy

      ‘I hate Mustangs and everything they stand for but the color on that Shelby(?), just fabulous, could imagine myself, being the president and all, buying one just for the color.’

      I too (hate is too strong a strong word) dislike most ‘American’ iron (I feel bad even saying that) built in the past 5 years or so, but with that said…

      Mustangs, Challengers, Camaros. (Charger, Dart, etc. are not of the same concept) These are the last of a dying breed of American Muscle; the ‘Pony Car’ (and yes, I know, two of those three are built in Canada). The working man’s ‘supercar’. Guys fought in Vietnam when these hallowed models originally were released to come home and buy one after service to their country. And proceed to drive very, very fast.

      Mustang is the only car that has (in one way or another, see Mustang II) stood the test of time the past 48 years and continued production. What exactly do you mean by ‘hate it and everything it stands for’? Not sayin’ that as a shot, just really wondering.

  • avatar
    icemilkcoffee

    One thing Obama never quite learned is smoothness. He always does things in the most stiff and obvious manner. If it was Clinton he would walk over to the foreign makes and say a few niceties before heading back to the domestic row for the glad-handing and back-slapping. How hard is that?

    • 0 avatar
      Advance_92

      Clinton didn’t hit his stride until the second term, either.

    • 0 avatar
      gslippy

      @icemilkcoffee: You’ve got that right. I’ve never agreed with the conventional wisdom that Obama is a good orator. He’s lost without a Teleprompter, and even with one, he’s stilted. Clinton really is better at these things.
      Time magazine recently profiled the current crop of politicians in terms of whether they’re in introvert or extrovert; Obama was classified as an introvert and Clinton as an extrovert. This explains their relative comfort levels with such a setting. A car show would energize Clinton; Obama can’t wait to leave.

      • 0 avatar
        icemilkcoffee

        Don’t believe that nonsense about teleprompters. Obama has had many, many town hall meetings where he handled all comers without skipping a beat. He’s met with republican congressional leaders dozens at a time by himself and took all their Q&A’s. When it comes to policy discussions he is every bit as wonkish and intellectual as Clinton. But as you said- his personality is just much more introverted and he’s never gotten truly comfortable with himself.

      • 0 avatar
        jkumpire

        LOL,

        Time Magazine profile is reliable? Just like a SAAB.

        And with respect Mr. Obama like other pols loads up his ‘Town Hall’ with supporters, staff pre-screens the questions and selects the most favorable ones, and he says the same thing for every question. the attack questions are either lame or done in such a way they can be refuted by emotional words or a straw man argument, which he or his handlers are good at doing.

      • 0 avatar
        gslippy

        @jkumpire: Time magazine may be liberal, but it’s not a political statement to evaluate the personality types of our politicians. I found it informative, not persuasive.

  • avatar
    threeer

    Maybe TTAC should change to TSOP…The Spin on Politics. I came here years ago for the analysis regarding the automotive world and excellent point of views/reviews. This man is the president of the United States of America. Politics aside, he SHOULD be looking at American (let’s hold off on the argument on what an “American” car is) iron. Given a short period of time at the show, if I were POTUS, I’d be damn sure to be looking at the American stuff. This type of reporting tends to lean more towards something I’d expect on Fox News…not what I thought was a site dedicated to a balanced approach to all things automotive.

    • 0 avatar
      gslippy

      Unfortunately, ‘all things automotive’ has included politics ever since Ralph Nader, the EPA, Middle East wars, the Pinto, the NHTSA, red light cameras, 55-mph speed limits, 85-mph speedometers, CAFE, CARB, the Volt, HOV lanes, subsidies, and bailouts got into the picture.

      I probably missed a few.

      And as I said in an earlier post, you can’t say the POTUS should be looking at “American” stuff without defining what that is. Certainly a transplant with 65% domestic content arguably qualifies.

      The bailouts were acutely political, and directly relate to automotive news. Without them, Obama would have only been looking at Fords.

    • 0 avatar
      Patrickj

      @three
      Lets face it, TTAC is Fox News as car blog.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        Consider the demographic that’s enthusiastic about cars – 100% male, older, less urban, employed to pay for them. Not any kind of revelation that that will be an overwhelmingly conservative crowd.

        The car has been a symbol of individuality and freedom for as long as it’s existed as a consumer product, the real question is how anyone at all can simultaneously be a car enthusiast and a Marxist.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        “the real question is how anyone at all can simultaneously be a car enthusiast and a Marxist”

        Hey, I resemble that remark!

    • 0 avatar
      wallstreet

      @threeer & Patrickj,

      You two are comparing apples to oranges. Fox News will never show photo of POTUS romancing a Mustang. Murdoch & Co will have a field day showing POTUS’ obsession with foreign vehicles. They want us to believe our president is an Indonesian muslim.

      The fact of the matter is many jobs are created by foreign OEMs.

    • 0 avatar
      FromaBuick6

      I’m getting really tired of people crying “Fox News!” every time they don’t like the editorial direction. Opinions vary – deal with it.

      If you so desperately need equal time, go over to Jalopnik where you can read “Barack Obama Thinks the Shelby GT500 Is ‘Sick.’” It omits the foreign OEM subtext, along with anything else resembling journalistic value.

      Full disclosure: I detest Fox News.

  • avatar
    lmike51b

    It’s interesting some people care so much about what cars he’s looking at. I think he should be more interested in what cars we’re looking at. I’m not going to base my next auto purchase on what he thinks is acceptable.

  • avatar
    Chicago Dude

    The current Honda FCX has been available for lease since before Obama was president.
    The Kia Optima Hybrid is just another Hyundai hybrid drivetrain that anybody can check out at a local dealership.

    If the President of the United States asks to see green technology, don’t show up with years-old off-the-shelf stuff and get insulted when he walks past it. These executives are the ones that are doing the insulting.

  • avatar
    namstrap

    In my job I see repair components for domestic vehicles. When you see a sticker on a part that says “Made in Canada with imported parts” and it’s just a one-piece bracket or something, what are you supposed to think? This supposed line between “domestic” and “imported” has gradually faded over the years into oblivion. Most cars made today are world cars, and owe no citizenship to any country.
    I may have mentioned this before, but at one time, I went into the shop to see what we were working on in this GM dealership. All the big trucks, Sierras, Silverados, Tahoes, were made in Mexico. We had some “foreign” cars in there as well. There was a Toyota, a Honda, a Sprint, and a Tracker that were made in Canada, and a new Regal that was built in Germany.

  • avatar
    tp33

    Help me out here, people. An American president walks into a car show in the American capital, strolls past a bunch of vehicles, and then has a Kodak moment as he runs his hand across the hood of the most hopped up version of one of the most quintessential American icons (the Stang), and you bitch about it? On a website for CAR enthusiasts, no less? Interesting…

    • 0 avatar
      nrd515

      It’s just another bizarre response some people have when it comes to Obama. It’s funny how people call him a “socialist”, or worse, when his policies would have put him into the center of Republican views back 30 years or so ago, before they swung hard hard right and made it almost impossible for me to vote for them.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    i think your title pic says it all…

    obama likes the 680hp GT500… that’s what real men are interested in

    sure they may drive home in a Prius V with the old lady…

  • avatar
    Alwaysinthecar

    What’s interesting is that there are 360 news stories on Obama going to the Washington Auto Show. Out of those 360 news stories, 11 come as a copy from the original Bloomberg article quoted here and written by Angela Greiling Keane.

    None of the other stories nor other writers mentioned anything about foreign OEMs getting so horribly snubbed. Only the Bloomberg article (and copies of it sent out across the wires) mentions this.

    Always be aware of the source of any story and who wrote it. Then read other sources and make your own decisions on how things might have actually gone down before you jump to any conclusions. And understanding that Bloomberg often has negative opinions about the current administration should help you.

  • avatar
    shaker

    “Obama snubs…” What an elitist, checking out a hot Ford Mustang. Boy, you guys are getting really good at this.

  • avatar
    Type57SC

    Sounds like someone junior at the white house screwed up if they asked for oems to bring in cars. Having pictures smiling in front of fuel cell cars after cutting hydrogen funding is not good, and really, why bother seeing the also-ran Optima hybrid. There’s nothing special about that one.

    • 0 avatar
      Chicago Dude

      No way.

      The Honda FCX made the auto show rounds during the Bush Administration. It became available to the general public during the Bush Administration. It is so unimportant to Honda that they haven’t been showing it at auto shows in years.

      Nobody at the White House asked Honda to bring an old car for him to look at. Obama wanted to see something new, and Honda didn’t do it.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    If the Administration invited/requested the presence of the foreign OEMs only to snub then then it was a dick move.

    The rest of the comments here? Five minutes of my life, gone. Never to return.

  • avatar
    carguy

    I’m sure that had he spent some time with the foreign manufacturers, the headlines would have been “Obama the elitist pals around with foreign cars”. You can’t please everyone – and certainly not those that have decided that Obama is wrong no matter what he does.

    • 0 avatar
      Jimal

      +1. I started writing something along these lines but about half through I decided that I just don’t care anymore. Fully all the insight the B&B have on topics automotive, when things turn political the quality of the commentary drops to that of a CNN.com or the comments on your local newspaper’s website.


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