Why autos are important to winning MI & Ohio

(6:30PM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)

MI is still the home of the auto industry and dependent on them for its economic well being.  From Gov. Granholm’s state of the state:

… we will not concede the automotive industry to any other state or nation.

We are the state that put America on wheels – the state that put the “car” in NASCAR. There is no vision for Michigan’s new economy that does not include cars designed, engineered, and made in Michigan. The industry’s changing – but we in Michigan cannot – will not – abandon it. And we should not allow our government in Washington to abandon it either.

Because of MI sustained efforts to keep and attract automotive research and development companies,

Michigan has more employees and investments in that growing part of our economy than all of the other 49 states, plus Canada, plus Mexico combined.

Detroit automakers, the UAW and their allies on Capitol Hill are launching an all-out blitz over the next few weeks for up to $50 billion in government loans over the next three years — money the companies say would help them to retool and survive.  

MI automakers, despite their own challenges, have invested over $9 billion in their Michigan facilities in the past three years.  Over the past eight years, they have agressively sought a partnership with government to invest in the technology of the future that will dramatically curtail auto emissions and eliminate our country’s dependence on foreign oil.

Michigan July 2008 Unemployment Rate   8.5%

Change Over Month  0.0

Change Over Year +1.4

While Wall Street believes Ford’s $26.6 billion can survive through 2010, it has doubts about GM, even after the automaker’s recent $15 billion cash-raising plan. On Wednesday, Lehman Brothers analyst Brian Johnson estimated GM would need at least $7.3 billion to get through 2009; if the economy worsens, that could rise to $12.2 billion.  

Michigan Payroll Jobs

July 2008          4,213,000

Change Over Month -5,000

Change Over Year -49,000

One big step for the automakers came this afternoon, when Republican presidential hopeful John McCain said he would support funding some of the loans the Detroit automakers and their suppliers seek. Noting that Congress had approved $25 billion in such loans last year but failed to fund them, McCain said the automakers deserved some of the same support the government had offered to Wall Street.

WARN Notices:  MI job losses just due to plant closings/signicant layoffs.

2008/6,905 (through July 31)








With Democratic rival Barack Obama already supporting such a plan, McCain’s support was seen as essential to winning support from Congressional Republicans and the Bush administration

Obama has 7-point lead on McCain in Michigan but the lead is shaky: 31% say they could change minds.

Romney won MI; but like McCain,  he owns an abundance of houses.

According to news reports, the former governor of Massachusetts has at least four properties in his portfolio. There is his primary residence in Massachusetts, a ski lodge in Utah, a lake front house in New Hampshire (described by USA Today as “an 11-acre estate valued at more than $10 million on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee”) and a La Jolla beachfront home in California. The latter, according to Politico, is worth $12 million, has five bathrooms, and contains “direct access to sand beach, a quiet cul-de-sac location, spacious oceanfront deck, numerous patio areas with manicured lawns and mature landscaping, lap pool and spa.

Now imagine this ad running in MI and Ohio.  How high can you count?


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    • dkmich on August 23, 2008 at 19:36
    • Viet71 on August 24, 2008 at 00:09

    but until Detroit automakers aim toward producing a vehicle with the value (low cost + high quality) of a Honda Civic, all the automotive R&D Michigan firms do will be a waste of time.  IMO.

    • TomP on August 24, 2008 at 02:26

    We need an American auto industry.  There are a lot of jobs at stake.

  1. I grew up near the Rubber Capital of the World, in OH which had more industrial Capitals of the World than you could shake a stick at.

    Hard to count how many of them were tied to the MI auto industry.

    At the high water mark of the middle class, that area had yacht clubs and country clubs for the middle class. I crewed racing sailboats for a public school gym teacher.

    The big boats were sailed by mfr’ing and auto industry upper-middle management, in the spheres I could reach, but boy were they dumb. They weren’t adaptable, couldn’t handle adversity, anything went wrong you could hear them half a mile bitching at their crew.

    I remember in the early 70’s telling my friends that if this was the crowd running our industries, the United States was a real sitting duck.

    A month from now I’m moving back, in time to register and vote. I’d been flushed out of my hi tech career of the future because India is better, into a home-based career of the past involving lathes, drill presses and such. Of course those machines are now all built for me by the Communists we defeated in the Cold War.

    Oh what a joy to be moving to the MI-OH rust belt –if only it were 50 years ago. The talent pool I could have drawn on, the raw materials, the apprenticeships, I could’ve retired my wife and worked a 3 day week if was willing to settle for a modest starter house in a safe but unassuming neighborhood.

    Well, the smart people who decide our future realized that what the world most wants is for America to entertain, finance and police it for them. So that’s pretty much all we do now. And boy does the nightly news prove the wisdom of THAT strategy.

  2. going to hear this a lot, but here goes. Why can’t the American auto makers develop low cost cars that are hybrid or at least get really good millage? How about developing usable electric cars.  Most cars on the road that piss me off huge and nasty, are American. Another thing I wonder about is the revolting ads I saw on the Superbowl with the robots committing suicide what’s up with that? The companies themselves don’t seem to give a rats ass about labor or jobs. Just stock indexes.  

    Do not the companies involved here have some responsibility in a free market to make products that are viable. I also sense collusion between the auto makers and the other entities involved with oil and even stifling other transportation innovations. I don’t think the government assistance to these dinosaurs will much improve these states. What amazes me as in Fahrenheit 9/11 and Micheal Moore’s first movie is why these rust belt states keep voting the way they do.          

  3. It is complicated. Labor and trade really do need to be ‘retooled’ also. The ‘free market’ is not free at all, the whole world is paying. NAFTA and all trade seems to only deal with the profits of the stockholders and has nothing to do with our economy. Bailing out these companies be they financial or manufacturers just seem to make it worse. Globalization may be here to stay but as the equation now stands between labor, standard of living and the damage to the environment it does not bode well for the bulk of humanity including those in our auto making states.    

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