Bailout Watch 8: Senate Dems Back Bailout

bailout watch 8 senate dems back bailout

When the new energy bill mandating higher CAFE ratings came out last December, it didn't offer automakers any kind of financial assistance to meet those goals. Since then, we've been treated to a parade of industry types wailing that with times so bleak, CAFE will kill Detroit unless the government bribes [s]assists[/s] the domestics with [s]following the law[/s] developing more efficient cars. Perhaps sensing John McCain's weakness with the industry, Senate Democrats are rushing to position their party to take advantage of the now free-floating "bailout vote." The Detroit News reports that Democrat leadership has agreed to support $6b in loan guarantees to domestic automakers, and is considering a further industry stimulus for plant retooling. All told, the package will total some $25b in loan guarantees that would cost taxpayers $3.75b. Tellingly, $300m of the initial $6b is earmarked for advanced battery development. If that sounds familiar, that's because it's a pretty handy preemption of John McCain's "Project Lexington." And since McCain seems happy to stick to his Nancy Reagan (just say no!) on bailouts, Obama and the Dems are going to go after the weird industry-worker alliance that wants bailout. It's populist, it's patriotic, and (post-Bear, Fannie and Freddie) it's principled. Best of all, it only costs the taxpayers a few billion. Game on!

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  • Brownie Brownie on Aug 01, 2008

    I never imagined gas prices could go over $0.50 cents per gallon when I bought my Ford Excess SUV which is now only worth its scrap value - where's my bailout?

  • Toxicroach Toxicroach on Aug 01, 2008

    So, we're supposed to bail them out with a mercy f*** rather than do it through the government? Hah. No thanks, rather pay a bit extra on the tax bill. It's GMs responsibility to sell cars that are worthy of the American people. They don't. 2/3rds of Consumer Reports Worst of the Worst Used Car list is GM product. 2/3rds. 22 out of 32 Worst of the Worst is from GM. They had 1 car on the Best of the Best. Out of 64 cars. Not a single Toyota or Honda on the worst of the worst list; their entire lineups on the Best of the Best. I don't believe GM makes good products. Every 5 years they say "We've finally caught up, this time its for real". 5 years later they'll say "Sure, the cars 5 years ago were piss, but this time we mean it! We really caught up." I'll take the Malibu seriously once they get some serious miles on them and don't turn into a money pit. If you really car about American car companies, go buy a Ford. They really are a (relatively) solid company, and they actually have a chance of making it through this. Some extra support from ex-GM buyers would help to make sure there was an American company left standing once this automotive Ragnarock is over.

  • Inside Looking Out Why EBFlex dominates this EV discussion? Just because he is a Ford expert?
  • Marky S. Very nice article and photos. I am a HUGE Edsel fan. I have always been fascinated with the "Charlie Brown of Cars." Allow me to make a minor correction to add here: the Pacer line was the second-from-bottom rung Edsel, not the entry-level trim. That would be the Edsel Ranger for 1958. It had the widest array of body styles. The Ranger 2-door sedan (with a "B-pillar", not a pillarless hardtop), was priced at $2,484. So, the Ranger and Pacer both used the smaller Ford body. The next two upscale Edsel's were based on the Mercury body, are were: Corsair, and, top-line Citation. Although the 1959 style is my fav. I would love a '58 Edsel Pacer 4-door hardtop sedan!
  • Lou_BC Stupid to kill the 6ft box in the crewcab. That's the most common Canyon/Colorado trim I see. That kills the utility of a small truck. The extended cab was a poor seller so that makes sense. GM should have kept the diesel. It's a decent engine that mates well with the 6 speed. Fuel economy is impressive.
  • Lou_BC High end EV's are selling well. Car companies are taking advantage of that fact. I see quite a few $100k pickups in my travels so why is that ok but $100k EV's are bad? The cynical side of me sees car companies tack on 8k premiums to EV's around the time we see governments up EV credits. Coincidence? No fooking way.
  • EBFlex "I'd add to that right now, demand is higher than supply, so basic business rules say to raise the price."Demand is very low. Supply is even lower. Saying that demand is outstripping supply without providing context is dishonest at best.