For Immediate Release:
December 12, 2008
Stacey Farnen Bernards
(202) 225 - 3130
(202) 225 - 3130
WASHINGTON – House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer released the following statement today regarding Republicans’ blocking of legislation to provide government loans to the auto industry so that it can restructure:
“Every member of Congress should be focused on the overall economy right now, not on satisfying long-standing grudges against political enemies. Other countries have already stepped up to help their auto companies, not to mention the fact that they provide health care to their workers putting our companies at a disadvantage from the beginning.
“By defeating short-term aid to the auto industry, Republicans are recklessly playing games with the nation’s economy just so they can take shots against unionized workers, as was apparently the top focus of GOP efforts last night. Economists from the left, right and center agree that our economy cannot sustain the body blow that a failed auto industry would deliver.
“With millions of Americans losing their jobs, homes, and health care, and millions more at risk, and with corporate CEOs making record salaries while average working Americans struggle with stagnant wages, it is inconceivable to me that Republicans have rejected a short-term loan to the auto industry as negotiated by our Republican President, all in the name of a philosophical hostility for unionized workers – putting 3 million jobs and the entire country at risk. In the negotiated agreement, all stakeholders were required to make major concessions.
“President Bush should act to protect the economy where Congressional Republicans have failed. He should direct Secretary Paulson to use TARP or other means to provide short-term funding to the auto industry, so that it can restructure and emerge as an industrial engine for our nation once again.”