Late Thursday evening, the U.S. automaker bailout bill failed to pass through the Senate. The legislation is dead and there are no plans for another bill to go through the process until the end of the year. To quote Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, this will be "a very, very bad Christmas" for many Americans.
Over the past day, Senators have tried to resolve the House-approved bill so it could pass Senate Republican muster, but reports suggest that the UAW was unwilling to accept GOP demands that workers agree to parity in pay and benefits.
News of the failed bill has already spread to markets across the Pacific, with the Nikkei index nose-diving over 6%. Things on this side of the world are bound to be worse when trading on the New York Stock Exchange begins tomorrow.
According to reports, General Motors has got bankruptcy and restructuring advisors on speed-dial in preparation for the bad news and Chrysler has already retained CH11 counsel.
Countless economists and industry analysts are warning that if any one of the Detroit 3 goes under, it will spell disaster for an economy already suffering in a recession. Video of the vote is embedded after the jump. More to follow tomorrow.
[Sources: Reuters, Detroit News, Automotive News - Sub. Req.]