U.S. has responsibility to help GM, Obama says

The U.S. has a responsibility to ensure the survival of General Motors and is called to make sacrifices to achieve that, President Obama said Monday in remarks announcing a $30 billion lifeline to the troubled automaker.

"GM is an American company, with tens of thousands of employees in this country, and the responsibility for its future ultimately rests with us," Obama said in remarks at the White House announcing GM's bankruptcy, and talking up a nearing conclusion of an abbreviated bankruptcy for Chrysler.

"Working with my auto task force, GM and its stakeholders have reached a viable, achievable plan," the president said."

Obama stressed that the government would not get involved in the company's regular business operations beyond "fundamental" business decisions. The president said the government, for instance, would not determine dealer or plant closings. (One Ohio Republican lawmaker has demanded the president personally reverse GM's decision to close a plant in his district.)

Obama also said that those adversely affected by the bankruptcy filing today are called to sacrifice for the sake of the next generation of the auto industry.

"I know that you've seen your fair share of hard times. I will not pretend the hard times are over -- difficult days lie ahead," Obama said to those affected.

"I want you to know that what you're doing is making a sacrifice for the next generation," the president added. "Not a sacrifice you necessarily chose to make, but a sacrifice you're called to make."