Obama wants YOU … to buy a car

March 30, 2009

AUTOS-OBAMA/President Barack Obama is now America’s car salesman.

Obama made his sales pitch on Monday as he laid out White House plans for restructuring the struggling auto giants General Motors and Chrysler. Buy a car, he said, and you might qualify for a tax deduction.

“The IRS is launching a campaign to alert consumers of a new tax benefit for auto purchases made between February 16th and the end of this year — if you buy a car anytime this year, you may be able to deduct the cost of any sales and excise taxes. And this provision could save families hundreds of dollars and lead to as many as 100,000 new car sales,” Obama said.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs followed up on this theme a bit at his daily briefing saying Obama “absolutely” would prefer for Americans to buy U.S.-made cars.

“I don’t want to turn this into an advertisement,” he said, but then noted that the Chevy Malibu was the 2008 Motor Trend Car of the Year while Buick was tied for first in a recent dependability study.

And Gibbs said he used to drive a Jeep and loved it. (He and Obama both own Ford Escape hybrids, though the president has a gas-guzzling, armored limousine to ferry him around while in office.)

Click here for more Reuters political coverage.

– Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing (Obama announces restructuring plans for GM and Chrysler.)


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Hey Mr. Obama,

How about getting an electic car into at least one of the big-three’s selection of cars??? How about simply bringing back the electric cars that were taken away from Toyota and Ford as soon as Bush got into office?? Seems pretty simple to me….and you could upgrade them to current standards and technology (charging time, battery power, car speed, etc).

If you did that, I would car immediately. Until then, I own far more efficient Toyota’s and BMW’s that are NOT from America.

Brian From Far Northern California

Posted by Brian | Report as abusive

The president announces that Chrysler has 30 days to live, that GM will probably go bankrupt, and then expects that a tax incentive to buy cars will be used to buy GM and Chrysler products? This level of naivete is astonishing.

The problem for the domestic auto industry hasn’t changed in decades. When you give more and more foreign manufacturers free access to our market without getting access to equivalent markets in return, it’s only natural that the market share of the domestic manufacturers will shrink. Do the simple math, Mr. President!

Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem this president has the courage to stand up to Japan, Korea and Germany and demand that they start pulling their weight in the global economy. Buy as much as we buy from you or we’ll use tariffs to make sure it happens. He won’t even respond to Mexico after they slapped tariffs on American products. On the stage of global trade, America is the village idiot.

Posted by Pete Murphy | Report as abusive

I love to buy a new car but who will take care all the burdens street cleaning$45 ticket, double parking$155, No Standing $150, improper turning $70 +surcharge $50 +2 points, Insurance Annually $2000 and Gas Annually $400-600. Wow. should I buy now. …………….

Posted by Shahin | Report as abusive

Might as well get the sorries over with.. Sorry american car companies, sorry Obamma but the next car/truck purchase will be a Toyota or really any other foreign manufacturered car/truck

Posted by David | Report as abusive

As if I needed any further incentive to buy a certified used BMW!

Posted by jahartmu | Report as abusive

I used to buy exclusively Chrysler products – Was proud of it and they make decent products. I will no longer buy GM or Chrysler (well, maybe a Jeep Rubicon but used)not because of quality issues but because this is madness. Hugo Chavez is very happy man right now.We just nationalized the auto industry. Now maybe I’m short sighted and this is just what other countries do, but we are not other countries. This smacks of payback – To wall street for all their in kind donations – to the UAW and all other unions – payback for getting their votes. What is happening to my country! Someone wake me up. I cannot believe this happening to the United States of America. The Few, the proud, the California libertarian.

Posted by Sierra M37 | Report as abusive

And when the Communist can’t get people to buy the electric cars and other junk the new government owned car companies are forced to make for 2x the much as the other companies, anybody want to take a guess at the next steps?

Yeah, that’s right, use the force of government to levy laws which limit the autos of those companies to match those of the government companies followed by Obama and his fellow communist dictating every detail of cars.

I purposely would not even consider buying an Obama-mobile until the law is passed which makes it a requirement.

Posted by LogicalUS | Report as abusive

For those of you who recall the days of LA car salesman Cal Worthington you know that President Goodwrench has MUCH to learn.

No cowboy hat, no jingle, no dog spot?!?!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZXpW4S2Q 1E&feature=related

He could’ve at least said “If you find a better deal I’ll eat a bug.”

Aw, nostalgia…sniff…

Posted by Go See Cal Go See Cal Go See Cal | Report as abusive

So if you live in a state that doesn’t tax new car (which Oregon doesn’t), then you get no benefit from buying an American car from a company on the verge of bankruptcy.

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

Buy a car?
20% unemployment: 10% are still looking and are registered as unemployed, 10% have either quite looking or have taken up part time jobs so they can eat.
Geithner is hinting against about billions more going to the bad banks. There is no solution in place for banking at this time.
Bernake is printing up enough money to double inflation in the next 3 years with no end in sight.
Obama is increasing taxes, capping salaries, and attacking bonuses and any other means of income.
And he wants me to go out and purchase a $40,000 car on credit?
I’m going to have to go with a “No” on that one Barack.

Posted by allison | Report as abusive

Toyota’s are manufactured in the United States. Buying a Toyota will pay for United States workers. Look it up. Also, we did not nationalize the auto industry. The government wouldn’t be threatening them with bankruptcy if they already owned it. Use your brains.

Posted by Chris | Report as abusive

I quit buying American cars 10 years ago. Until then, I resented the premium price asked for Toyota Cars and Trucks, the premium for Acura, Infinity, Subaru, and Lexus too. Then I bought a Subaru Forester. Wow, what a car! Next, I added a Toyota Tacoma truck. Man!,………this thing is awesome! for a third car, I bought a Hyundai Sonata and the beat goes on,………I have the new model of each of these cars today. All of the old ones never ever broke down, not once!
My point is that nothing American made is half the quality of these vehicles and they are worth the money. I have had no problems with any of these new vehicles like I did with Chevy’s and Fords. (sensors, chips, fuel pumps, suspension, brakes, paint, it goes on and on) My costs of ownership are nil.
Ford has the audacity to advertise that their quality is better than Toyota’s,………..they bought THAT survey, I’m sure.
I’m done with American cars for good.

Posted by Olddog | Report as abusive

So how it is that Obama can force out a CEO of an Auto company, but not ask one stinking bank CEO to step down?

Oh wait that’s right the bank CEO’s are in the tanks for the Dems. How I forgot that AIG, Freddie and Fannie gave more money to the Democratic party and then we bailed them out. Oh how we forget that they started the economic disaster we are in, but yet the bank CEO’s are still in office making millions. Or how about the little bill Dodd put in that allows AIG to give out bonuses.

Come on America wake up! We cant let our Government control who can stay and who had to leave a company. Now there is talk to bail out newspapers! What’s next?

Posted by Jason | Report as abusive

Let’s hope that they really aren’t gonna bail out the newspapers. They are a thing of the past and need to go the way of the Dodo Bird, the Edsel, and the wooden handled Q-Tip. If they haven’t mastered the Internet in all of it’s intricacies they don’t deserve to survive.

Posted by Olddog | Report as abusive

The Stock Research Portal says that President Obama is taking a big political risk with the auto bailout. “If a merger is not struck between Chrysler and Fiat within 30 days, or if GM is given a further extension on its restructuring plan after 60 days, the U.S. Administration will – at least in my view – lose credibility with respect to the positions it takes on the economy generally.”

Via Stock Research Portal (http://www.stockresearchportal.com)

Posted by Rob | Report as abusive

I’m holding out for an all electric vehicle that I can recharge with a solar array.
Then I’ll buy two.

Posted by Patrick McMillan | Report as abusive

Let them go bankrupt. Only that will break the union back and get the company back to health.

Posted by Daniel | Report as abusive

Open comment to Reuters –
I find it astonishing that I can read posts as those above and believe that they are actually reading (or understanding) anything on your news site. Most of these posts are more suited for the Enquirer.

Posted by eloise | Report as abusive

Obama is overstepping his bounds and trampling on the Constitution. His latest attempt to grab at more power and bully his way into the private sector has made me – and many, MANY like me – even more resolute to not buy anything more than basic necessities.

Posted by laura | Report as abusive

Amusing how USA citizens run down USA jobs, and none have a clue that all that PROFIT from foreign firms go right back home and hurt our dollar. Second WE CANNOT export to most foreign nations on equal basis, and yes USA autos get premium money where sold. Quality is a MANAGEMENT decision, NOT workers. Prices are about the same for all autos is based on what they can get AKA a Cad-BMW-MB does NOT cost four times what a Escort costs, it is called “P received values” AKA what you think it is worth. Noted that IF foreign built in USA (nearly all by (wage) slaves in southern third world USA auto Plant-actions in states that lead USA in worst health care, education, highest infant death rates, pollution, etc.
Now days very little qual difference between most auto’s, but since most do not know delta between hub cap and radiator does not matter much. NOTE ALL auto sales way down and EU/Japan are helping their companies.
So now we lower USA auto worker wages to foreign plant wages, which shows about how dumbed down the USA has become. Must be ONLY nation going that would do that one, somehow cannot see the growing economic giant, China and India doing same.. but their value of education systems a lot better then ours and it shows. Noted that gov is demanding “A plan” from USA auto, but NONE have wondered why Wall St and Bankers not getting smae treatment, none of the fools running down USA industry seems to even demand the banks JUST TELL US of where the money went.
So all you brilliant patriots, go one and tell us why you buy foreign.. want wages set to what foreign firms pay, do not worry about billions in profit dollars leaving USA. Yep all you brilliant consumers and workers.. keep up your ravings on how USA should shut down. as such will never impact you or yours.. best wake up while we can, USA is in deep economic troubles.. and amusing to see the fools howl about a mere $#0 billion or so, while trillions going to banks and Wall St. All this just to bust unions and further reduce workers say in things.. but seems more then a few deserve to get what they so badly seem to want. But ask, what other nation has such patriotic citizens that want such things? Rather obvious we really missed teaching history and finance, labor and money very well.

Posted by Chuck | Report as abusive

listening to the interviews with the auto union car workers,they can only point fingers at how the banks were bailed out and they have not been given the same consideration which is i suppose is a valid point.but i get the impression that they are also banking on their involvement with the democratic party,and special interests of particular congressmen who have received donations from the unions in the past, to allow them to maintain the status quo,in the future.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

only way GM, chrysler and ford are going to survive is to demand every other car sold here, has to be built here, and make them all become unionized to level the playing field. the harold wilson socialist government in england altered the trade union laws in favor of the unions, and restrictive practices, and other union activity ruined the british car industry.they could not complete with the union free toyota and datsun that opened factories in england at that time.does there seem to be a parallel here?

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

Sure, and so does Ratan Tata … :)

Posted by Vikram | Report as abusive

if Barack Obama would be the one to convince I would surely buy the car …

Kellie Used Auto Sales

Posted by JoyRussell | Report as abusive