CEI Attacks Auto Industry Bailout Bonanza

Auto Industry Seeks Additional $25 Billion Dollar Bailout

Washington, D.C., November 7, 2008— Auto executives yesterday huddled with House Democrats to discuss a possible $25 billion loan to the industry, this on top of the first $25-billion taxpayer “loan” already approved by Congress for the industry.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute condemned the bailout proposals as a huge mistake that would hurt taxpayers and, ultimately, the auto industry itself.

“Congressional attempts to favor domestic automakers will be a waste of taxpayer money, a skewing of automaker competition, and an invitation for even more industries to seek bailouts in the future,” said Sam Kazman, CEI General Counsel.

“If Congress wants to help the auto industry, the best way to do so is by repealing the stringent fuel economy standards that it enacted last December,” Kazman added. “With gas prices dropping, fuel economy mandates will become an even tighter noose around the industry’s throat. Meanwhile, thousands of vehicle occupants will be killed due to reduced crashworthiness as the industry downsizes automobiles to meet the standards.”

In CEI’s view, even though multi-billion dollar bailouts may no longer be the rarity they once were, that does not entitle them to Cole Porter’s Anything Goes status. There are a number of major automakers that will be able to not only survive but eventually prosper.

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