The Corner

Chrysler’s Saviors

Government negotiators completed the sale of Chrysler to Fiat this morning. The New York Times reports:

A two-page order from the Supreme Court made it clear that it was not ruling on the merits of the Indiana funds’ case. But the justices wrote that the funds, which represent teachers and police officers, “have not carried the burden” of proving that the Supreme Court needed to intervene.

It’s impossible to determine from the Supremes’ two-page order why they rejected the Indiana funds’ request for a stay. Ironically, the conservative Justices’ views on the matter of standing might have played the biggest role. The Court ruled that the funds had not demonstrated “a fair prospect” that a majority of the Justices would vote to overturn the lower court’s decision. In this case, the lower court had ruled that the funds lacked the standing to challenge the sale. As one reader pointed out to me, “It is the conservative Justices — led by Roberts — who have worked the hardest to narrow ’standing’ in order to minimize federal court involvement.”

As for Chrysler’s future? Well, you make the call:

The impact on Chrysler’s lineup will take longer to be felt. Chrysler, more than any other American player, depends heavily on Jeeps, minivans and pickups as the bulk of its lineup, even after gas prices rose above $4 last year.

The Obama administration’s new CAFE standards will limit Chrysler’s ability to profit from these vehicles. How will the company fill the gap?

Small Fiats are expected to be sold at Chrysler dealers, like the Fiat 500, the latest version of the perennial Italian favorite.

Fiat 500

Buon giorno!

Ok… but who will run the company?

The company said the nine-member board will include three directors appointed by Fiat, four appointed by the federal government, one by the Canadian government and one director by the United Auto Workers’ [union].

Wow. Good luck with that.

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