Wicker Reacts to Auto Bailout Defeat

December 12, 2008

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., who was against the bailout for the Big Three automakers, reacted to the legislation dying in the Senate last night:

“I opposed this bill because I think it fails to get to the root of the problem.  The Big Three were in financial straits before our economy slowed down due to a troubled business structure that ensured they couldn’t compete with other automakers.  Now, they have asked for billions of dollars in taxpayer assistance to help survive.  While the merits of using taxpayer funds to help save these companies can be debated, the fact is that this proposal falls well short of guaranteeing the needed reforms to keep these companies afloat.  The U.S. government simply cannot continue to throw good money after bad using taxpayers’ dollars. 

“Nobody wants these companies to fail.  Government intervention with taxpayer dollars, however, was not their only route to long-term viability.  Other alternatives discussed could have afforded these companies the breathing room needed to restructure their debt and labor obligations in order to once again become viable and competitive.  However, these ideas were never brought to the floor of the Senate. 

“The Big Three have played an important part in American history and they continue to be a significant part of our economy.  If tough choices are made, I believe they can and should continue to do so in the future.” 


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