Supreme Court delays Chrysler-Fiat deal

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg threw a wrench into Chrysler's government-backed merger with Italian automaker Fiat, issuing a stay in the sale pending Supreme Court review.

"IT IS ORDERED that the orders of the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, case No. 09-50002, dated May 31 and June 1, 2009, are stayed pending further order of the undersigned or of the Court," Ginsburg wrote in an order released late Monday afternoon.

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The court will now take up a vote in closed session over whether to accept the lawsuit by Indiana bondholders to halt the deal engineered by the Obama administration. Four justices would have to vote to hear the appeal of lower courts' decisions to proceed with the deal.

Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), whose district includes Chrysler's corporate headquarters, condemned the bondholders' lawsuit late Monday.

"It is quite clear that Indiana's case is not in the best interest of the people of Indiana," he said. "Other stakeholders, including other secured lenders and Chrysler's autoworkers, accepted shared sacrifice because they recognized their interest was better served keeping Chrysler alive rather than forcing liquidation."

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