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

House Decidedly Passes Autos Bailout BIll

The House just passed the $14 billion Detroit Big Three autos bailout bill by a vote of 237-170, sending it to a Senate where approval is no slam-dunk, thanks to the promised opposition of leading Republicans.

The bill was overwhelmingly endorsed by Democrats (205-20) and strongly opposed by Republicans (32-150).

The money provides nearly instant emergency bridge loans to GM and Chrysler at a low, low introductory rate of 5 percent. Ford said it doesn't need the money right now but wants to be able to tap it if the economy worsens.

The money is a repurposing of $14 billion of $25 billion in direct loans already approved to the automakers to help them retool their factories to make more fuel-efficient vehicles.

The passage of this bill represents a big victory for a lame-duck Bush administration with terrible approval ratings. Congress wanted to keep the $25 billion "green" loans inviolate and approve additional funds, but the White House promised to veto such a move, saying the emergency loans should come from the green money.

Congressional Democrats capitulated, reluctantly.

"Green is gold," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said before the vote tonight.

Now, the White House must whip Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) and his contrarian Republicans into line.

-- Frank Ahrens
The Ticker is Twittering!

By Frank Ahrens  |  December 10, 2008; 8:51 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Chrysler, Ford, GM, Nancy Pelosi, automakers, bailout  
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Next: Capitalism In Question: Why Is GOP For 'Forced Restructuring' Of Big Three?

Comments

Where, oh where, are the copy editors? "Decidely" is not a word.

Posted by: Putney1 | December 10, 2008 9:07 PM | Report abuse

Two thumbs up for the majority of the Republicans & for the minority of the Democrats.

Sen. Shelby should be able to make enough of the "undecided's" see things his way...the correct way.

Quit throwing good money after bad.

Posted by: guesswho1 | December 10, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

It is unfortunate that most of our available "green money" will now be used as restructuring incentive to aggressively encourage voluntary separations, force early retirements, close supplier accounts, shed workers, pay for legal fees, and close large parts of an organization which can't otherwise be sold. Though, when you look on the positive side, without the availability of such a fund, it appears that things could be much worse. Lucky us !

Posted by: jralger | December 10, 2008 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Mervyns gone. Big Lots closing. Ross and Home Depot on the verge of closing. No jobs! No money! Zero plus zero equals zero. Who is going to buy a new car? And where are they going to drive it to? Work. HA! Food costs peak. Utilities double. Mortgages equal foreclosure. Taxes increasing to pay back bail out loan. Do you think we're going out to buy a new car. On what,credit? HA! I guess the master plan is to let everyone fail and start over, but at least we'll have new cars to drive that get one more mile per gallon than before.

Posted by: steveherb | December 10, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Who cares what the Republicans think???? The fools really haven't got much of a voice now, have they? They'll find themselves even more unpopular if they use up a Senate fillibuster over this protracted bailout business..Americans want to move on. Boy, looks like the dems will continue to gain ground in Congress..

Posted by: rsampson02 | December 10, 2008 11:45 PM | Report abuse

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