FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
President-elect Barack Obama rallied the support of the hard-up U.S. auto industry during his campaign and promised a summit with the heads of Ford, GM, Chrysler and the United Auto Workers union soon after he takes office in January.
But that meeting might not come soon enough.
Last month saw the weakest pace of U.S. auto sales in 25 years. Chrysler's sales were down 35 percent and Ford's sales down 30 percent. General Motors sales plunged 45 percent. GM is expected to release some disheartening financials tomorrow as well.
Watch: Cafferty: Auto bailout?
House speaker Nancy Pelosi is meeting with the heads of all three auto makers and the UAW today to discuss the possibility of a second $25 billion loan to the companies.
The auto industry hopes that Congress will include that loan and other aid in a new economic stimulus plan. But there's no guarantee when or if that will happen.
Detroit's shedding jobs like they're going out of style. Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm issued a plea today to Democratic leaders of Congress: Help us.
Here’s my question to you: Should the federal government come to the aid of the U.S. auto industry?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Thom from Negaunne, Michigan writes:
It is imperative that this industry not go under. A good start would be supporting the merger of GM and Chrysler. At least the government would not be rewarding an industry of crooks as it did in the case of the banking farce and greedy CEO's. However, the stipulation that jobs be returned to the U.S. and no more shipped out of the country must be attached to any bail-out along with any new plants must be built at home.
Yes, if the auto industry doesn't get help, it will put thousands and thousands of people out of work. It's called a trickle down effect: from the auto plant to the part suppliers. The banks aren't the only ones that need help. People should think about buying American cars. Keep the wealth in our own country.
No. Why throw good money after bad? Again why should the U.S. taxpayers pay for mistakes made over the years by executives at the big three auto companies? If they can't compete they should, and probably will, go out of business.
Mel from Georgia writes:
Yes. My husband works for Mopar, the parts division of Chrysler. The UAW community and our families are desperate. Hours have been reduced greatly, paychecks have decreased, and fears of lay-offs and plant closings loom everyday. A rescue package focused on making our autos more "green" will help with job creation and retention, reduce oil dependence and improve the environment.
Marva from Oklahoma writes:
In a word, "No!" The auto industry has only itself to blame for its refusal to manufacture quality, economy-efficient cars. It chose to go along for the ride with Big Oil and it must now hang on like everyone else. Isn't it odd that Corporate America believes itself entitled to relief via the taxes paid by Middle-class America, yet Middle-class America reaps none of the benefits!
Yes, yes, yes. Maybe they don’t deserve it, but let’s face it: the auto industry is an engine of the economy. We need the jobs.