Cheney: Bush passed buck on GM

Ex-VP says Bush knew he had to bankrupt GM but left it for later

By Andy Barr
|  Wednesday, Jun 3, 2009  |  Updated 2:51 PM EDT
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Blame Them For Your Empty Wallet

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President George W. Bush knew GM was headed for bankruptcy -- but left President Obama to clean it up instead.

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Former Vice President Dick Cheney says that former President George W. Bush did not want to be the one who “pulled the plug” on General Motors and instead decided to pass on the issue to President Barack Obama.

“I thought that, eventually, the right outcome was going to be bankruptcy,” Cheney said of the company during the second part of interview with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren that aired Tuesday night.

“[GM] had to go through such a dramatic restructuring to have any chance of survival that they had to be able to renegotiate labor contracts and so forth,” he said. “And the president decided that he did not want to be the one who pulled the plug just before he left office.”

Cheney said that rather than acting on GM, the Bush administration “put together a package that tided GM over until the new administration had a chance to look at it.”

The former vice president stated that the choice was made in order to aid the Obama administration, thinking that forcing GM to restructure late in the Bush term would have dumped on Obama the “first crises the new administration would have to deal with.”

“These are big issues and [Bush] wouldn't be there through the process of managing it, but in effect, would have sort of pulled the plug on GM,” Cheney said, adding that he and Bush wanted to allow Obama’s team to “decide what they wanted to do.”

 

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