Tales from the Trail

Obama swipes at “just say no crowd”

July 30, 2010

President Barack Obama in Detroit demonstrated what is sure to become a familiar theme in the run up to the November elections — Democrats painting Republicans with variations on the ”Party of No.”

Looking under the hood of “Cadillac” usage in healthcare debate

January 12, 2010

For car buffs, “Cadillac” and healthcare are probably not a natural mix, even in the context of financing.

Obama admits security “screw up,” but some wonder who’ll pay

January 6, 2010

President Barack Obama may have hoped to limit the political fallout from last month’s attempted bombing of a Detroit-bound airliner by admitting there was a “screw up.” Will firings follow? Some think Obama’s unusually sharp rhetoric raises the odds that heads will roll.

Bomb plot thrusts Obama into political storm

January 4, 2010

President Barack Obama is weathering a political storm over last month’s suspected al Qaeda plot to bomb a Detroit-bound plane, particularly from Republicans who say he dropped the ball on security while pursuing healthcare and climate reforms. But how much substance there is behind the allegations may depend on who’s talking.

No sequel to ‘cash for clunkers’ but…

September 3, 2009

While the $3 billion “Cash for Clunkers” blockbuster is over, Congress is not finished with Detroit. AUTOS/

The First Draft: Friday, Nov. 5

December 5, 2008

Detroit CEOs drive their hybrid cars over to the House of Representatives for another serving of humble pie this morning. But it’s still not clear if they’ll get the $34 billion bailout they’re looking for, as several senators remained skeptical after yesterday’s testimony on that side of the Capitol. 
     
Testimony before the House Financial Services Committee begins at 9:30 a.m. 

The First Draft: Thursday, Nov. 4

December 4, 2008

They’re back, and this time they didn’t take the corporate jet. CEOs of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler will try again to wrangle billions of dollars in bailout money from Congress. This time, they drove from Detroit and they can explain they would do with the money. But they’ve also upped their request from $25 billion to $34 billion.
    
Testimony in front of the Senate Banking Committee begins at 10 a.m.
    
The Labor Department will issue its weekly jobless claims report, and it’s not expected to be pretty. The numbers come out at 8:30 a.m. Futures markets point to a lower opening for U.S. stocks after drugmaker Merck offered a disappointing 2009 profit outlook.
    
Some of the government’s top financial officials speak today. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke talks about housing at 11:15, while Federal Insurance Deposit Corporation Chairman Sheila Bair speaks at a consumer conference at 8:30 a.m.

The First Draft: Wednesday, Dec. 3

December 3, 2008

President-elect Barack Obama will continue to fill out his Team of Rivals when he names New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson as Commerce Secretary at a press conference scheduled for 11:40 a.m. EST For those of you keeping score at home, that means at least three members of his administration will be former Democratic presidential candidates – Richardson, Vice President-elect Joe Biden, and Secretary of State pick Hillary Clinton. 
     
We can’t wait to see what he has in mind for Dennis Kucinich. 
     
On the Hill, lawmakers will continue to weigh U.S. automakers’ restructuring proposals ahead of hearings later this week. The heads of Ford, General Motors and Chrysler, chastened from their skeptical reception last month, are driving from Detroit this time — and they’re confident they’ll get here in good shape. 
     
“Our cars don’t have car trouble,” GM president Fritz Henderson said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” 

Shocker: Fat cat CEOs fly on private jets!

November 19, 2008

Congress is taking a hard look at Detroit’s autos these days. But what about Detroit’s jets?

The First Draft: Tuesday, Nov. 18

November 18, 2008

Chief executives of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler, along with the head of the United Autoworkers union, will testify to Congress today about the need for a bailout of their struggling companies.