• Dec 4, 2008
General Motors CEO Rick Wagoner has arrived in Washington to deliver testimony at Senate hearings scheduled for today and tomorrow, and as we reported late yesterday, his transportation this time was not a private jet, but rather a series hybrid Chevy Volt mule in the body of a Chevy Cruze. Ford CEO Alan Mulally also ditched his private plane for a ride down to DC in a Ford Escape Hybrid, while Chrysler CEO Bob Nardelli made the trip in a Chrysler Aspen Hybrid. UAW President Ron Gettelfinger flew down, but on a commercial flight (he never had a private jet in the first place and it likely would've been awkward if he chose one automaker's vehicle over the other two).

Testimony will be given by the four men and a number of other witnesses today and tomorrow, though it still appears as if there aren't enough votes in the Senate to get federal aid for the automakers passed immediately. Even if aid in the form of government loans is approved, there's still the matter of where the money will come from. The only two options on the table are converting $25 billion in already approved loans for investment in green technology to be used by the automakers to keep their businesses afloat, or carving out the money from the $700 billion in aid that Congress has already approved for the financial industry. We'll be keeping an eye on what's happening in Washington today and tomorrow, so stay tuned.

[Photo by Win McNamee/Getty]


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  • 77 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      The government has probably already WASTED $38 Billion of the $750 Billion financial bailout. The automakers are asking to get 5% of the value given AIG et al.
        • 6 Years Ago
        AIG blew through its $85 billion bailout in a little over two months, then came back begging for another $40 billion to continue partying-as-usual. Absolutely no government oversight in sight!
      • 6 Years Ago
      What a show they are doing for all the attention. You know it will all go back to normal (jets and limos) when they get the sweet mullah.

      Chevy Volt mule in the body of a Chevy Cruze? i bet it is just a near production Cruze. what a joke...
        • 6 Years Ago
        No, a retail Cruze. Cruze is already on sale in its native land of Korea.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @I3ziko
        I agree with you that some mules are like that, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that all the kings horses and all the king's men worked on the boss's car to make sure it didn't have wires hanging out of it and could make a short trip from the airport, or whatever waypoint they selected.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Mules cost hundreds thousands of dollars, they have guts sticking out of the dashboard and from under the hood they are driven by test engineers not guys in suits…they are barely safe to drive to the public roads. Do you think they would risk a humiliation of this thing breaking down in front of all the people watching? I want to see a picture with the hood open…
        • 6 Years Ago
        A near production Cruze? Are you joking? It is public knowledge that GM switched the volt mules from the old Malibus to the Cruze, why on earth would you doubt that isn't a Volt mule?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Bail Out Explained

      Young John bought a horse from a farmer for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the horse the next day. The next day he drove up and said,
      ‘Sorry son, but I have some bad news, the horse died.’

      John replied, ‘Well, then just give me my money back.’

      The farmer said, ‘Can’t do that. I went and spent it already’

      John said, ‘Ok, I know a way to get my money back.’

      The farmer asked, ‘What ya gonna do ?

      John said, ‘I’m going to raffle him off.’

      The farmer said, ‘You can’t raffle off a dead horse!’

      John said, ‘Sure I can . I just won’t tell any body he’s dead.’

      A month later, the farmer met up with John and asked, ‘What happened with your dead horse raffle?’

      John said, ‘ When I raffled him off, I sold 500 tickets at two dollars a piece and made a profit of $998..’

      The farmer said, ‘Didn’t anyone complain?’

      John said, ‘Just the guy who won. So I gave him his two dollars back.’

      John grew up and is now a congressman.
      • 6 Years Ago
      He should have showed up in a ZR1 to show congress what a good American car looks like.
      • 6 Years Ago
      For the money they are getting, these guys should be crawling on the floor.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wagoner driving a small GM car?!

      Probably the first time ever. If the guy ever drove or for that matter looked at other small GM cars in the past i.e. Cobalt or G5 then perhaps GM would have put more effort into making them a better more competative product.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Will any Senator have enough of a clue to point out that the Aspen has been axed? And why no bling on the Cruze? How 'bout putting some Dubs on it, or at least some plastic wheelcovers?
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm still standing by my choice:
      Camaro w/ the ZR1 crate engine.

      if I were in Congress, I would've cut a check right then and there
      • 6 Years Ago
      this just goes to show us how out of touch GM is-they show up in the car thats going to save GM but leave the hub-caps off.sad,sad,sad.this was a chance to show off the volt but...like i said,sad,sad,sad.
        • 6 Years Ago
        They probably left the hub-caps off on purpose, to make it more recognizable as a prototype rather than a production car.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The point is not about what transportation he takes to Washington, or what small budget changes he makes (CEO only gets $1 salary), or what temporary changes the UAW will entertain. IT is about what real permanent LARGE budget changes are made. Health Care costs. Retiree benefits. The BIG things in the budget. Get rid of the big budget problems and then you can start doing things better. Only then can you make REAL change. Getting rid of all the parasidic UAW agreements would be a GREAT place to start!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Who cares if he was actually the one driving?

      I'm surprised more people haven't picked up on the fact that he shipped two cars down to DC to show off. Two extra cars, one of which doesn't work, shipped with money that GM really shouldn't be spending if they are so hard up for cash. This tells me that no amount of loans is going to keep them from bleeding money. They don't know how to spend wisely.

      • 6 Years Ago
      You are worried for 25 billion and you never said anything for all the money that the country spend in wars, financing rich people in wall street, or the banks that make a lot of money with our savings and return us nothing?

      This is real economy!!!

      No job, no money then spending reductions and guess what, no job for others!!!!
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