GM bailout proposal

By Ben Wolf - email | bio

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Shreveport mayor Cedric Glover is in Washington to convince lawmakers to pass a $25 billion package to try to save the American auto industry.

The mayor says he's not only trying to protect jobs at the struggling GM plant in Shreveport, but the entire industry.

It's an industry that many lawmakers refuse to bailout because of it has failed to compete with foreign auto giants.

Mayor Glover argues he's in D.C. not because of bad leadership within the auto industry, but instead what he calls a "perfect storm of circumstance."

"We see ourselves with credit markets frozen and individuals who would want to buy cars but are unable to do so and other who are limited in their ability to do so because of their current economic circumstance," Glover said.

The auto CEO's say it they don't get help, one or more of the nation's car makers could collapse by the end of this year and that would mean hundreds of thousands of layoffs.

As the $25 billion dollar bailout hangs in the balance, hundreds of worried GM workers gathered at a rally this afternoon in Shreveport.

Young and old stood shoulder to should with one common message: save GM and save the country.

"We're not here for us, we're here for everybody," said GM worker Mike Tillery.

According to the workers, GM doesn't have a trickle down effect, rather the magnitude of a flooding river on our nations economy.

"Suppliers -- that's one thing, restaurants, department stores, malls, grocery stores, gas stations," said GM worker Vera Brown.

The $25 billion bailout proposal doesn't come without criticism.

Several senators think it delays the inevitable.

The workers say GM has made sacrifices before asking for help.

"They've allowed GM workers to hire new workers at a lower tier wage -- less than half of what we make," said Tillery.

"The healthcare has suffered. The type of healthcare we get now is not as good as it was in the past," added Brown.

GM officials claim one in every 10 jobs in the American economy is auto related.

It clear whether you agree or disagree with bailout proposal, it would have a major effect on our nation's economy.

For a link on how to write your representatives about the bailout click here:

Pat Simon contributed to this report