Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In
Barack Obama

Pelosi, Reid and Emanuel Push for Carmaker Bailout

2560777189_1cfcb929ba.jpgCadillac assembly line replica at the Detroit Historical Museum

Over the weekend, Democratic leaders in the House and Senate urged the Bush administration to extend financial aid intended for Wall Street to struggling domestic carmakers, a move that could have the support of President-elect Obama.

The Times reports that on Saturday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid co-signed a letter to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson asking that part of the $700 billion bailout package be directed toward Detroit. "A healthy automobile manufacturing sector is essential to the
restoration of financial market stability, the overall health of our
economy and the livelihood of the automobile sector’s workforce," they wrote.

The letter was issued following a Thursday meeting between Congressional leaders and representatives of Ford, Chrysler and General Motors, as Big Three sales continue to plunge. On Friday, GM announced that it could begin running out of cash in 2009.

Rahm Emanuel, incoming White House chief of staff, hinted on Sunday that his boss could be amenable to the Pelosi-Reid proposal. Again, the Times

When asked on ABC’s "This Week" where Mr. Obama stood on the issue,Mr. Emanuel seemed to suggest that Mr. Obama, as a last resort, mightbe open to tapping the rescue fund to help carmakers, calling the autoindustry an "essential part of our industrial base."

He addedthat Mr. Obama has asked his economic team to look at ways to involvethe industry in shaping an energy policy that weans the country offforeign oil, seeking ways to use the $25 billion in loans that Congresspassed in September to help make auto plants more capable of producingfuel-efficient cars.

The Bush White House, for its part, has indicated it would not support using bailout funds for the Big Three.

Photo: MarkinDetroit/Flickr

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Friday’s Headlines: The Polk’s on Us Edition

This afternoon, our reporter Jesse Coburn will journey to Midtown to accept Streetsblog's first George Polk Award, one of journalism's highest honors. But before that, here's the news.

April 12, 2024

Op-Ed: Police Placard Corruption Report Was Weak, Disappointing … and Completely Expected

The Department of Investigations clearly had ample evidence of crimes and serious violations, yet its report lets everyone off the hook.

April 12, 2024

City Unveils Design for Long-Decrepit East Harlem Greenway

Nearly two dozen blocks of crumbling greenway along the Harlem River are slated for a revamp in 2025.

April 12, 2024

Thursday’s Headlines: Bike Lanes are Good for Business Edition

A business owner testifies from the heart (and wallet). Plus other news.

April 11, 2024

Environmental Groups Join to Fight Adams’s BQE Reconstruction

Rebuilding the Moses-era highway for another century is not environmental justice.

April 11, 2024
See all posts