The person picked to orchestrate the US Auto Bailout for the Obama Administration, former Car Czar Steve Rattner, rebuts Romney’s awful justifications for continuing to oppose the Obama Administrations strategy during the bailouts of GM and Chrysler and largest suppliers.
The auto czar who led the bailout, Steve Rattner, has a simple challenge to Mitt Romney’s claim that private investors could have rescued Detroit: find me one.
Rattner, writing in the New York Times, wrote on Friday that Romney’s contention that American automakers didn’t need federal loans to move them through a managed bankruptcy intact is ludicrous given that the only financiers big enough to step in were barely hanging on for dear lives themselves.
“I know this because the administration’s auto task force, for which I was the lead adviser, spoke diligently to all conceivable providers of funds, and not one had the slightest interest in financing those companies on any terms,” he wrote. “If Mr. Romney disagrees, he should come forward with specific names of willing investors in place of empty rhetoric. I predict that he won’t be able to, because there aren’t any.”
Unlike the 2008 federal bank bailout, which provided emergency funds to banks without reorganization or reporting requirements, the auto bailout did force the companies to restructure and report progress. The loss borne by US taxpayers is still in the billions, but it’s far less injurious to the US taxpayer than the massive unemployment benefits and unfunded pension liabilities that would have been sent to 10s of thousands of former employees of bankrupt GM and Chrysler .
The federally funded auto-bailout kept many large US companies open and tons of people employed. Those people collect checks today and probably remember thinking they were going to lose that check forever almost 3 years ago. It was an emergency intervention that did it’s job. If your neighbor Bob’s house is burning down, the fire department shows up, just in time to pull the kids and the dog out and save the fire from spreading to the rest of the neighborhood, you don’t walk over to what’s left of Bob’s house the next morning and say: “Well, if they couldn’t save your new sun room they may as well have waited for the house to burn down before showing up.”