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Obama cites auto bailout as a reason for re-election

By Reuters
October 13, 2012

(REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

President Barack Obama sought on Saturday to sustain momentum from Vice President Joe Biden‘s strong debate showing by touting the benefits of one of his signature actions, the rescue of the U.S. auto industry, as he prepared for his next debate with Republican Mitt Romney.

“We refused to let Detroit go bankrupt,” Obama said in his weekly radio address. “We bet on American workers and American ingenuity, and three years later, that bet is paying off in a big way.”

The president will drop from view for several days to prepare for his second debate with Romney on Tuesday. By focusing on the health of the auto industry, currently benefiting from strong sales, Obama is reminding voters he came to the industry’s rescue. Romney had opposed government help for automakers.

Obama is hoping to build on Biden’s confident performance at the vice presidential debate on Thursday after his own listless debate performance last week gave Romney a sharp boost in opinion polls. He meets the Massachusetts governor for the second of three debates on Tuesday evening in a town-hall format.

In his address, Obama highlighted trade agreements that helped promote sales of U.S. autos abroad. Romney has called the Obama administration’s record on trade weak and promised to wage much more aggressive campaigns to open markets abroad to U.S. goods and services.

“I want to see more cars on the road in places like South Korea imported from Detroit and Toledo and Chicago,” Obama added.

Obama also said that “after 30 years of inaction, we raised fuel standards so that by the middle of the next decade, cars and light trucks will average almost 55 miles per gallon – nearly double what they get today.”

(Reporting By Mark Felsenthal; Editing by Peter Cooney)

Copyright 2012 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.

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One Response to Obama cites auto bailout as a reason for re-election

  1. Keith

    October 14, 2012 at 11:33 am

    It would seem to me that the “auto bailout” would be a strong reason NOT to vote for Mr. Obama.

    These companies (In concert with their unions) got THEMSELVES into the mess that required these so-called “bailouts” in the first place.

    Indeed, all the bailouts really did were to prop up businesses that could no longer compete in the free marketplace because they had become ever more saddled with (labor union forced) inefficiency and bloated managerial bureaucracy.

    Clearly, these bailouts simply rewarded bad business behavior. And, for my money, the companies that received such “manna from the taxpayers” should have been allowed to fail. In fact, one did anyway DESPITE the government trying to prop them up.

    And what about the OTHER auto companies who WERE running their businesses efficiency (like Ford, Toyota, Honda, et al)?

    All the “bailout” did was put these other companies at a distinct disadvantage in the marketplace. I should think the stockholders of these other companies are mad as hornets at Mr. Obama about now for artificially propping up their competition.

    Unfortunately, all of this “bailout” nonsense was just one more indicator (as if we needed any) of the USA’s continued long, slow slide into socialism.