White House Auto Rescue Plan

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Washington, DC - House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) released the following statement on the White House auto rescue plan announced today:

“With one significant, regrettable exception, the President’s announcement regarding intervention to prevent the collapse of the American automobile companies is very welcome. Most of what he has announced reflects the agreements negotiated between the White House and the Treasury on the one hand and Congressional Democrats on the other. And just as Speaker Pelosi showed a willingness to compromise by agreeing to the President’s initial request that the funding come from the money appropriated for environmental improvements, President Bush has responded with an equally helpful compromise by accepting the Democrat’s original preference for using TARP funds, after Senate Republicans botched our agreement. The President is correct in rejecting bankruptcy because that would hinder, not help, our effort to create conditions at which the companies will be viable going forward and the taxpayer safeguards and compensation restrictions he has applied are appropriate.

“In addition to the negotiated provisions, the President has added an unfair assault on working men and women which could require them to accept a disproportionately large reduction in what is currently legally owed to them. I am particularly opposed to the notion that the President borrowed from Senator Corker that could give foreign auto companies in effect the ability to dictate wages for all America auto workers. Because these provisions are unnecessary to achieve our goal and because they were unilaterally inserted by the President into what was otherwise a negotiated agreement, I believe that the incoming Administration and the Congress should take whatever steps are necessary to remove them.

“All stakeholders including union employees must negotiate cost reductions but this must be done with equal burden sharing and with a result that will be much fairer than the President’s approach.”

Read the full article at: House Committee on Financial Services

Date published: Dec 19, 2008

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