Misguided actions by White House and Congress led to GM bankruptcy (Rep. Jim Jordan)

When Monday morning’s news of GM bankruptcy broke, I was already two hours from home, talking with patrons and local workers in a Bob Evans Restaurant in my district, just a few hundred yards away from our local GM stamping plant that was on the list for closure in June 2010.

Having visited the facility on multiple occasions, I have come to know it for a high quality of work with dedicated employees. My first thoughts that morning were with the affected workers and their families. I also had the opportunity to speak with a number of local elected officials that morning, who would feel the brunt of this decision as well.

A number of factors led to this fateful day, not the least of which was a series of misguided actions by the White House and Congress.

The lack of a comprehensive energy policy led to $4/gallon gasoline, which hurt the sales of GM trucks and SUVs whose body panels are stamped in our district.

The arbitrary move towards artificial CAFÉ standards have stacked the deck against larger vehicles as well, codifying an unwarranted government preference to smaller vehicles.

The short-sighted cap-and-trade policy being debated in Congress will unilaterally disarm American manufacturers by raising the cost of American-made goods (like cars and trucks) through artificial increases in energy prices.

Finally, President Obama’s Auto Task Force, whose members have exactly zero hands-on experience in the automobile industry, are now the de facto decision makers for major companies like General Motors. They rejected several versions of GM’s restructuring plans before finally accepting the one that likely will result in a major facility shutdown in our district.

My dad worked 30 years for GM. It was once a thriving company—the world’s leading auto company. I’m hopeful for the future of GM, but a federal government takeover will only cause its current problems to linger. With common-sense, pro-manufacturing policy from Washington, we can turn the ship around and get our economy, and the automobile industry, back on track.

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