The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Checking in on the Ever-More-Expensive Auto Bailout


Politico, a few days ago: “[Democratic National Convention planning] documents also give a glimpse of what parts of Obama’s record will get the most attention in the campaign, with one piece — the auto bailout — rating several mentions in the plan.”

The news this morning:

The Treasury Department says in a new report the government expects to lose more than $25 billion on the $85 billion auto bailout. That’s 15 percent higher than its previous forecast.

In a monthly report sent to Congress on Friday, the Obama administration boosted its forecast of expected losses by more than $3.3 billion to almost $25.1 billion, up from $21.7 billion in the last quarterly update.

The report may still underestimate the losses. The report covers predicted losses through May 31, when GM’s stock price was $22.20 a share.

On Monday, GM stock fell $0.07, or 0.3 percent, to $20.47. At that price, the government would lose another $850 million on its GM bailout.

By the way, the President speaks as if the (somewhat) improved financial health of GM* is some sort of public policy miracle.

Is there any way you could provide $85 billion to an industry and it wouldn’t be in better financial shape?

* Other than the management shake-up.

And the recall of 36,000 Impala police cruisers.

And the separate recall of 10,000 vans.

Tags: Barack Obama , GM


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