Detroit. The Motor City. Motown. Hitsville, USA. Hockeytown. The largest municipality ever to file for bankruptcy in US history. You can add that last one to Detroit's many titles, as Republican Governor Rick Snyder authorized emergency manager Kevyn Orr to file a petition for bankruptcy yesterday.

Detroit's Chapter 9 bankruptcy bid is likely to be very bad news for city employees, retirees and their families, but what does it mean for the auto industry? Automotive News spoke with Wall Street financial guru Steven Rattner, the same man that acted as President Barack Obama's so-called auto czar, ushering General Motors and Chrysler through bankruptcies of their own, to see what parallels there will be between the two situations.

According to Rattner, bankruptcy for the city was inevitable, just like it was for GM and Chrysler. "It's analogous to the auto companies, in that you have too many stakeholders whose claims are too underwater to realistically ever worked this out with some kind of bankruptcy," Rattner told AN. But, Rattner cautions, "This will be much messier." The auto bankruptcies took a brief six weeks, while the city's case will likely last at least a few months, if not a year or more.

While the automaker presence in the city isn't what it once was, GM still employs roughly 3,000 people at its Renaissance Center headquarters, right in the heart of downtown. Chrysler's Detroit workforce is mainly blue collar, at the Jefferson North factory, which builds the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango. Ford, the only automaker not to go through bankruptcy, has limited its presence within Detroit city limits.

In a statement, GM said its "is proud to call Detroit home and today's bankruptcy declaration is a day that we and others hoped would not come. We believe, however, that today also can mark a clean start for the city." Ford shared a similar sentiment, with a release stating "The city has a difficult job ahead, and we are optimistic that governmental leaders will be successful in strengthening the community." Chrysler, meanwhile, reiterated its commitment to the city, "We not only continue to invest in the city and its residents by adding to our presence in Detroit, we also are committed to playing a positive role in its revitalization."


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  • 151 Comments
      RonMcCord
      • 2 Years Ago
      No one wants to say it because America is so Politically Correct look at the census here, what Detroit needs is more indians!!! For those reading between the lines look at Michigan vs Detroit and enough said. Population definition and source info Population, 2012 estimate 701,475 9,883,360 Michigan White alone, percent definition and source info White alone, percent, 2010 (a) 10.6% 78.9% Detroit Black or African American alone, percent definition and source info Black or African American alone, percent, 2010 (a) 82.7% 14.2% American Indian and Alaska Native alone, percent definition and source info American Indian and Alaska Native alone, percent, 2010 (a) 0.4% 0.6%
        EZen
        • 2 Years Ago
        @RonMcCord
        Pretty sure there isn't a single study saying that the way to revitalize an area is by bringing in Native Americans or even actual Indians. Now, gay couples? Been proven many times.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @RonMcCord
        [blocked]
      J P
      • 2 Years Ago
      No need to worry - OCP will have Detroit turned around in no time!
        DSmithee
        • 2 Years Ago
        @J P
        And then they can just tear down 'Old Detroit'! Brilliant plan.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Radwon
      • 2 Years Ago
      I hope this won't affect the morale of the guys building my Grand Cherokee that I just ordered.
        bubwalt
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Radwon
        My son works at that plant. He tells me that most of his fellow employees do not even live in the city. In the 60's, 70's and 80's, Detroit wen through "white flight," to the suburbs. Starting in the 90's, black flight into the suburbs became the new norm. This is why the population has declined the last 50 years or so. Enjoy your new Grand Cherokee. I love mine. Thank you ladies and gentleman at the Jefferson plant.
          Radwon
          • 2 Years Ago
          @bubwalt
          I will. I can't believe how well the Grand Cherokee is built. I don't know how I even ended up on the Jeep car lot and in the seat of an Overlander. They sure have come a long way. I don't know of any vehicle of that size can drive the way it does while having all those goodies packed into it. Tried the Lexus RX350, Infinity FX37 and BMW X5. All overpriced and you wouldn't dream of taking it off road or are they as capable offroad as the GC. The only thing close is maybe the Ranger Rover Discovery and that's just not an option. Tell your son, thanks and keep up the good work.
      WHO
      • 2 Years Ago
      Detroit is a shining example of the failures of the Democratic party policies.
        Daniel D
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        More like an example of the ugly side of capitalism.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        [blocked]
        Wally SirFatty
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        Spoken like a true (uneducated) douchebag.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        [blocked]
        engr00
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        Detroit??????! Try the country and its not Democrat its GOVT period.
          EZen
          • 2 Years Ago
          @engr00
          Yeah! All government is bad with no exceptions. Corporations are where I put my faith. Corporations have never ever steered us wrong or acted in their own interests instead of their customers.....dot dot freaking dot...
        RudyH
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        well I don't know about democratic party, just government and poor city planning...
      Judyz
      • 2 Years Ago
      A few too many people here seem to be cheering the death of the Great American Motor City. It's disgusting. Detroit has suffered through a cycle of win and lose. There simply was no way any government could run a city of 700,000 people with an infastructure designed for 1.5Million or more without running in the red. The smart people knew that and bailed. The one's left in government were willing to lie and say it could be done. The liars were also mostly corrupt and made it worse. No suprise there. In the end this is still a community of human beings trying to live their lives. Americans should be embarassed and ashamed by the conditions these people have had to endure. Detroit is New Orleans North. The city left to die in the face of a disaster. The fact that it has been slowly happening for years is even more shameful. It takes almost an hour on average for the police to respond in a supposed first world city. Many of those left behind simply don't have the skills or the health to pick up and start again. Their homes are now worthless and job prospects are bleak. The current situation just couldn't continue. People were being left to die waiting for ambulances while the city kept cutting to try to pay impossible debts. Detroit is only the first and most extreme case. Cities like Cleveland and Buffalo are dealing with similar situations. Industries change and businesses move. Unfortunately not everyone left behind can move quite so easily. There is hope and a possibility for change in Detroit. Many companies are increasing their investment and people are moving back into nicer areas. Some smart investors are grabbing property banking on the next cycle. Anyone who loaned them money is going to take a big haircut. Hopefully in the end the city will be able to start again. It will take some creativity and probably some outside help but we should be asking how we can help them not laughing at their misfortune and playing politics. As someone who has never lived in Detroit but visited it many times I am cheering for these people and hopeful for their future.
        Ducman69
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Judyz
        Because the state of Detroit has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with the people living in Detroit. Its the people living in Houston and Boston's fault. Its everyoen ELSE'S fault, and surely its the elected official's fault, not that they were just voted in to and pandering to what the masses of the Detroit people wanted. If you want positive change in New York, you need to attract back the white people. Think about things that white people like. Starbucks, fine cheeses, asian girls, Whole Foods, ugly sweater parties, golf courses and frisbee sports, film festivals, and you know maybe an Apple store here and there. And today's white guy likes black people, but in moderation. Its fun to have a black friend, just try not to assemble in groups of more than fifteen or twenty, and have lots of crosswalks so that if you do people can go to the other side of the street to feel safe. Follow my plan and Detroit will again be a shining jewel. :)
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ducman69
          [blocked]
          Gordon Chen
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ducman69
          (My history may be wrong, so forgive me). NY almost died as a business city. Then the city hired a marketing genius. He invented the "I
          Radwon
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ducman69
          Great plan. Myself and others will be more than happy to move there...that is when you and say 200 fellow whiteys move your businesses and families there. Be sure to let us know when it's all good. We'll bring a bottle of Napa's finest to your BBQ.
      x19x19
      • 2 Years Ago
      30 years of democrat leadership with freebees for everyone, myopic unions and car companies, that thought the 50's and 60's would last forever. 1.4 milion now down to 700k, most of which too poor to leave and this was inevitable.
        Sean Conrad
        • 2 Years Ago
        @x19x19
        Please explain what these 'freebees' were? If everyone was getting 'freebees' why is the population abandoning the city?
          Smooth Motor
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Sean Conrad
          The freebies were concentrated at the top. Have you ever seen the lavish benefits the mayor and city council's office get for salary, staff, and expenses? It's among the highest in the nation. Not to mention all the crooked dealings by former mayors and council members on top of that. It would take a book to list all the scandals. All on the back's of a failing infrastructure.
      Smooth Motor
      • 2 Years Ago
      If it wasn't for the private sector and men like Roger Penske, Dan Gilbert, and Mike Illitch Detroit would be a total trash heap. Big government liberals have failed yet another city.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
          Chris
          • 2 Years Ago
          What Car Guy said is true. The city has been mismanaged by liberal Democrats for decades, and is now basically being propped up by private citizens, private citizens with a lot of money and pride in their hometown. Granted most large cities are run by liberal Democrats, but the ones running Detroit were just total idiots. Facts are facts, and no amount of race baiting can change that, so go cry wolf somewhere else.
          Ontracks
          • 2 Years Ago
          I think Raz was being sarcastic, using the term big government or liberal in a negative light is usually dubbed "racist" by default.
          wooootles
          • 2 Years Ago
          What are you implying here, Raz? Hmmmmm
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
        Sean Conrad
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        Genuinely curious, how did 'big government liberals' cause this?
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Sean Conrad
          [blocked]
        Hi There Paul
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        I kind of thought that the big 3 did this. They're the ones that left Detroit, & Michigan in droves.
          tylermars.design
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Hi There Paul
          You kind of thought wrong.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Hi There Paul
          [blocked]
          Ontracks
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Hi There Paul
          Ford hasn't built anything in Detroit since the Model T at the Piquette Ave. Plant. Did you mean the big 2? They built plants elswhere because they couldn't remain profitable in Detroit, how dare they not just roll over and die with the city.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Hi There Paul
          [blocked]
        Patricia1960
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        Gilbert is a liberal...you don't know what your talking about
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth Motor
        [blocked]
      WHO
      • 2 Years Ago
      since most of this debt is tied directly to UNIONS, I'm guessing Obammy will just write another blank check to pay off his UNION buddy thugs AGAIN
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        [blocked]
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        [blocked]
        • 2 Years Ago
        @WHO
        [blocked]
      Skicat
      • 2 Years Ago
      I live near Pontiac and worked and payed taxes in Detroit 1995-2002. The city has the yin/yang of many other cities in the U.S. Corruption along with good people doing their best, racism and multiculturalism, desperate poverty and the ability to host amazing parties (Super Bowl, NCAA Final Four, World Series), failing public schools and the excellent Wayne State University, a thriving, mostly safe core and suffering, dangerous neighborhoods where most of the crime takes place. Let those who have never been to, much less lived in the area reserve judgement. Regardless of your political or social opinions (mostly uninformed), this is going to hurt a lot of people, some of whom are my friends. I guess if you enjoy watching others lose much due to matters beyond their control, this will be a laugh-riot for you.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Skicat
        [blocked]
          Chris
          • 2 Years Ago
          You would enjoy watching people lose their lively hoods? Believe it or not, the people who live in metro Detroit aren't much different from the people where you live, in fact there's quite a few that you might actually have a lot in common with.
          Alfonso T. Alvarez
          • 2 Years Ago
          Then you are a pathetic excuse for a human being - enjoying seeing others suffer is absolutely sick and you should seek immediate mental health treatment.
        Xedicon
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Skicat
        I've seen many people who've never even been to Detroit or know anything about the city at all make comments about the bankruptcy and the comments are wildly off the mark. I'm very glad to see your comment. Thumbs up for you!
        the.fog
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Skicat
        Excellent comments!
        the.fog
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Skicat
        Excellent comment!
      Johnny Trailerpark
      • 2 Years Ago
      Yes, Detroit is a ****-hole. Yes, it was caused by poor city management among many OTHER factors not the least of which was the big 3 sitting on their collective arses when the competition from Japan and Germany got too tough. HOWEVER! To place blame squarely on Democrats or "liberals" for the downfall of Detroit is ridiculous. Jefferson County (Birmingham) in Alabama is a white Republican stronghold and it is also bankrupt: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/07/15/us-usa-alabama-jeffersoncounty-idUSBRE96E0S820130715
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        [blocked]
        Ducman69
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        Jefferson County Alabama Demographics: White or Hispanic 54%, Black 43%, Other 3%. Yeah, Jefferson County is a white republican stronghold.... ROFLMAO!!!
          J P
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ducman69
          OK - instead of getting fancy with your posts, why don't you and Raz just admit you hate blacks and call it a day. That way you don't continue to waste anybody's time and keystrokes.
        edward.stallings
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        watch this on youtube: Detroit in RUINS! (Crowder goes Ghetto) A compelling argument for why the blame should be placed on liberals. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hhJ_49leBw BTW Jefferson County can hardly be a Republican stronghold. Barack Obama carried Jefferson County.
      Wisdom Seeker
      • 2 Years Ago
      Poster city for the long-term destructive effects of liberalism. It could now provide a movie set location for post-apocalyptic disaster movies.
        Quen47
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Wisdom Seeker
        Totally! Liberal cities are all high-crime s*$#holes like San Francisco, NYC, Seattle, Boston, Portland, DC... oh wait, I just listed arguably the most desirable cities in the US. The reasons for Detroit's downfall are many, but blaming it on politics ignores the HUGE structural role that the private sector played. Banks refusing to give loans to African-American families when the city was at its most prosperous, the big three's years-long inability or disinterest in building cars that people actually want to buy. Freeways (built under Republican administrations with heavy big three support) replacing public transport and carving neighborhoods to pieces and ruining them. I mean... c'mon.
          Smooth Motor
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Quen47
          So Detroit failed because of racist banks, terrible car products (never mind the JD power numbers for many years now), and lack public transportation? Decades of corruption and mismanagement under Democratic leadership had nothing to do with it, right? Wow, the sun shines a different color in your world............
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Wisdom Seeker
        [blocked]
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