• Jun 9th 2009 at 8:27AM
  • 53
The writing's been on the wall for years: GM would have to declare bankruptcy if it had any hope of restructuring in order to survive in the long-term. And though the Obama administration's effective take-over of General Motors was hardly the first case of the government nationalizing a private company, President George W. Bush didn't want to be the one to do it.

This, according to former vice-president Dick Cheney, who reportedly admitted in a recent interview on Fox News that the Bush administration floated the $17.4 billion auto industry bailout package in order to give the outgoing administration enough time to exit and for the next administration to settle in before the house of cards in Detroit came tumbling down. According to Cheney, President Bush "decided that he did not want to be the one who pulled the plug just before he left office."

[Source: Motor Authority | Image: Mark Wilson/Getty]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm no fan of Bush, but who can blame the guy? It was the right thing to do. Pulling the plug and walking away would not only seem cold and cavalier given the economic climate, but there is a lot more to do than just 'pull the plug' and walk away - I'm sure the process takes months. He just left it in the capable hands of the next administration to deal with it properly and completely. Man, I can't believe I'm defending the jerk...
        • 6 Years Ago
        Whats funny is he probably should have if only, for once in the course of his administration, kept to the oath of his office and not done something outside of the powers of his presidential rank (well, he did do some crazy stuff as CinC, but those powers were granted by Congress). And that goes for Obama too who is steadily overstepping more and more boundaries than Bush or his predecessors. It is a slippery slope we have in this country when it comes to power of the POTUS.

        Of course even after the bailouts, GM is still bankrupt, the DOW has still dropped them from the Index, jobs have still been lost, assets liquidated and brands sold. And what does that show? The government is ineffective in its assistance, depresses the markets through its actions, and has done nothing other than buy up a company whose products will not move fast enough to return a profit anytime soon to alleviate the loan and get the Federal Government out of the Board Room.
        • 6 Years Ago
        My thoughts exactly, almost verbatim.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Another reason why I'm glad that he's gone. Probably one of the worst presidents in American history who won only because of people's religious belief's toward abortion.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Worse presidents.

        5.Herbert Hoover was about on-par with 'W', as I think in retrospect Clinton was, as well. All luke-warm centrists in their party, all for larger government.

        4 Teddy Roosevelt - progressive
        3 Woodrow Wilson - HUGE progressive
        2 Franklin Roosevelt - HUGE progressive and prolonged the depression, chummy with Stalin.
        1 JIMMY CARTER - grossly incompetent in office, loves to give stamp of approval to dictatorship shell-elections now.

        Obama, if he continues his progressive policies, will leave those five in the dust, and destroy the US economy, and leave the constitution, and the people's freedom in tatters.
        • 6 Years Ago
        And another wow...really?

        Please, please, for the love of all things that are crazy...prove that this is the case. Last time I checked, he won because of the number of electoral college votes...same for Obama.This is usually the case if the politician promises more free stuff (that they are not actually in a position, politically or legally, to provide), not because of only one stance or another. Blanket statements are for the factually deficient...
        • 6 Years Ago
        And I am not going to defend Bush on this one, but how can you say he is one of the worst presidents when he did nothing different or revolutionary than previous ones? I can give you 5 that are far worse than he if only due to the way that they misappropriated the powers of the Presidents position:

        1) Andrew Jackson
        2) Franklin Roosevelt
        3) Jimmy Carter
        4) Barack Obama
        5) Richard Nixon
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is not news... at all. No wonder Bush ducked that reporters shoe so well, he's been ducking ever since Katrina! And I'm glad that someone from the Bush administration could (finally) admit it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Wow, really? Katrina? Really?

        Yeesh - its not even the President's Constitutional responsibility to handles natural disasters. FEMA shouldn't exist, neither should the DOHS but they, unfortunately, do. It is up to the states to handle their own problems - if they cannot, they ask for Federal assistance (which they did, right after the disaster started and slightly before), which can be granted using monetary supplies or through the assistance of the U.S. Military (such as the Cost Guard or FEMA, through the DOHS/DOD), with the express control of the Congress under an emergency granting of power to the President. This all happened exactly as it is outlined and is another example of why the government at the national level, both parties included, are a collective of incompetents.

        At the same time, you cannot blame one person for the disaster. Maybe we should start with the people that level several feet below sea-level near the cost in the most active hurricane region in the world?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Katrina, LOL.

        So Democrat Mayor Ray Nagan's hiding in his hotel room and witless failure to use the City of New Orleans' school bus fleet to transport the indigent had nothing to do with the debacle?

        New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin was also criticized for failing to implement his evacuation plan and for ordering residents to a shelter of last resort without any provisions for food, water, security, or sanitary conditions. Nagin delayed his emergency evacuation order until less than a day before landfall, which led to hundreds of deaths of people who (by that time) could not find any way out of the city.[2] Adding to the criticism was the broadcast of school bus parking lots full of yellow school buses which Mayor Nagin refused to be used in evacuation. When asked why the buses were not used to assist evacuations instead of holing up in the Superdome, lack of insurance liability was given as a reason.""

        ""Had contra-flow on highways been initiated sooner and more buses begun evacuating families (including the idle school buses that were not used at all) the numbers of stranded New Orleans occupants would have been significantly less making the initial wave of FEMA supplies adequate and even excessive.""



        And so Democrat Governor Kathleen Blanco's refusal to activate the Louisiana National Guard or request Federal help (which prevents the President from acting), or activate Louisiana's response plan, or order an evacuation until AFTER Bush personally called and urged her to take these steps had noting to do with the debacle.

        It was all Bush's fault, just like GM going bankrupt, really?

        Naah, just more Liberal Dim-o-RAT attempts at passing blame from themselves.
        • 6 Years Ago
        The blame lies squarely with the local and state government of Louisianna. Notice the same problems did not befall Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas. It's not a coincidence that Louisianna now has a Republican governor, so the people of that state get it, even if some here do not.
      • 6 Years Ago
      "Quick, he's got a gun!"
      • 6 Years Ago
      "Cheney says Bush left GM bankruptcy for the next guy"

      • 6 Years Ago
      Wonder if Cheney might run for President in the 2012 elections.
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is news????

      December 20, 2008 WSJ

      WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration said it would lend $17.4 billion to General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC, buying them a few weeks of financial relief but leaving the biggest decisions about the industry's future to President-elect Barack Obama.

      Mr. Obama and his aides on Friday were generally supportive of the White House approach, especially the decision to avoid a bankruptcy filing.


      The loans were made after consultation with the Obama transition team.

      You people with BDS need to get a new life.

        • 6 Years Ago
        Good eye! In the world of American politics, there is no good versus evil. Its all shades of gray, working for different interests.

        Nevertheless I still think Cheney is a bigger D-bag then the rest. Remember, this guy was only the VP, yet he effectively was the acting president for most of those 8 years.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yes, it's always better to screw public finances, one of the nation's largest company and the next guy, than your own image. Wonders of politics.

      But can you really imagine Bush exercising his influence and effectivelly sacking GM's CEO? Another tax break? Maybe.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So from The Prince of Darkness he becomes, Captain Obvious.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Sorry, Autoblog, but that's not what Cheney said. Or at least, he didn't mean what you're claiming he meant. Cheney is saying that Obama's inauguration was so close that it made no sense to saddle him with a situation that he may or may not have supported, therefore Bush gave out some money to keep the status quo until Obama's inauguration, when he could decide what to do.

      While I think Obama is the first Marxist president and therefore the worst possible person to determine what happens to Detroit, this is an entirely appropriate decision on the part of the Bush administration.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Political discussions on autoblog is so LOL.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Well, that was smart, why to start a job that you don't have time to finish?, only democrats do that.
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