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2.7%  Q1 GDP    4.57%  avg. 30-year mortgage     9.5%  Unemployment

Michigan Delegation: Help the Auto Industry!

A bipartisan Michigan Congressional delegation banded together this morning on a conference call to shout out one clear message:

One, the auto industry desperately needs money. Every segment of the industry -- automobile manufacturers, dealers, suppliers and auto finance companies that help consumers purchase cars -- is hurting because of the frozen credit markets and ongoing financial crisis.

Two, over the years, the Bush administration just hasn't been much help in providing aid to the auto industry.

"The bottom line is that other countries don’t tolerate the erosion of their industrial base," said Rep. John D. Dingell(D-Mich.)

Three, the government needs to step in to turn around Detroit's decline.

"We’re asking for emergency situation here," said Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-Mich.) " We’re asking Secretary Paulson and Chairman Bernanke to restore liquidity so Americans can buy cars and trucks."

And four, the delegation is unsure how that want those emergency funds distributed, whether its through buying up bad auto loans or injecting money into the Big Three.

"We’re not able to tell you the cure to it," Dingell said. "The companies need to set out what their needs are. The dealers and suppliers need to do that too."

The delegation sent a letter to Paulson and Bernanke today urging them to use their regulatory authority to take action to help the flagging auto industry.

--Kendra Marr

By Kim Hart  |  October 23, 2008; 12:50 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  
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