GM is not alive, and Obama didn't save the auto industry

Here are the numbers:

  • GM sold fewer vehicles in the U.S. in 2014 than in 2008.
  • GM had about 17.6% of the U.S. market in 2014, down from about 21.9% in 2008.
  • GM bailout had a net loss of $10.4 billion (bank bailouts a net gain of $24.3 billion).
  • GM’s 2013 profit was $3.8 billion; Ford, without a bailout, $7.2 billion.

The economy is now 8% larger than late 2007, right before the recession started, but total U.S. auto sales in 2014 were only 1.5% higher than 2007.

The only thing needed to be “saved” in late 2008 was GM (and Chrysler), whose finances had been run into the ground due to union contracts, not the weak economy.  The auto industry at large had a rough ride just like everyone else, but the industry came out from the crisis depths without being bailed out.  But auto sales growth is still lagging the rest of the economy, and GM is actually a drag on those numbers.  Basically, the part of the industry that Obama did not “save” is actually doing better than the part he “saved.”

As for Chrysler...it was sold to an Italian company by the same president who complained in 2012 that Romney's Bain is betting against America.