No Blank Check for Automakers, Says President-Elect Obama

November 25, 2008
While agreeing that the U.S. government must play a role in helping the struggling auto industry, President-elect Barack Obama cautioned that "we can't just write a blank check to the auto industry," speaking in the Detroit News. Obama also agreed with Congress' decision to wait until the Big Three return with a sound game plan for revival before lending them financial assistance.

Obama also urged Congress to pass a pricey job stimulus bill quickly in the hopes of creating jobs in the near term. He characterized the country's financial state as "an economic crisis of historic proportions," and Detroit News agreed, calling this mess "the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression."

During a news conference in which he introduced his administration's economic officials, Obama said he felt that restoring economic health currently takes priority over concerns about the deficit, but nonetheless pledged to restrict federal spending where possible.

Obama was very critical of the Big Three CEOs' performance at congressional hearings last week (to which they all flew individual private jets). Obama seems to see the debacle from both sides, and Detroit News quotes him as saying that "nobody wants to see more job loss ... but taxpayers don't want to see more money wasted."--Colin Mathews


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