WASHINGTON (AP) - Detroit's Big Three automakers are warning
lawmakers that if they let the industry collapse, the already teetering economy will face catastrophe.
They say without $25 billion in loans, millions of people will lose their jobs as their demise ripples across the economy.
Chrysler chief Robert Nardelli told the Senate Banking Committee that a bailout would be "the least costly alternative" when compared with the damage from bankruptcy.
Ford's Alan Mulally told the senators the auto industry is "a pillar" of the economy and that his company is well on its way to "building a new Ford."
GM's Rick Wagoner said the problems in the industry are not the fault of management but the deepening global financial crisis. He said the industry needs "a bridge to span the financial chasm."
The new rescue plan appears stalled. The Bush administration and
Republicans in Congress don't want to dip into the Treasury Department's $700 billion financial bailout program.
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