It would be great if Andy Card could land a powerful and influential job in the auto industry.
He'll probably want to take a few days off after his last day as White House chief of staff on April 14, but that's OK. His timing couldn't be better.
Before joining the Bush campaign six years ago, Card was a General Motors vice president and its chief lobbyist in Washington. Before that he was president of the American Automobile Manufacturers Association.
He knows his way around the industry, and he has options.
Card could slip easily into the job of president of the American International Automobile Dealers Association. Kelly Martin is the acting chief, but the group is looking for a permanent replacement for Marianne McInerney, who left suddenly in March.
But Card may not want that job. The AIADA's decision to whack its fledgling political action committee raises questions about its mission, its reason for existing and the board's determination to remain independent of the National Automobile Dealers Association.
There must be something that's more suitable.
Wait a minute!
The buzz about GM CEO Rick Wagoner's job being in jeopardy gets louder every day. The company's accounting problems, the ongoing Securities and Exchange Commission investigations and the $10.6 billion loss last year could put a damper on Wagoner's performance review.
So if the GM board sacks Wagoner, why not hire Card?
Compared with running the White House staff on 9/11 and through everything else the Bush administration has faced since then, being GM CEO ought to be a snap.
And while GM and Ford say they don't want a federal bailout, someone of Card's stature could tell the government what the industry needs in terms Washington understands.
He knows all the right ears in which to whisper.
And if it turns out that Wagoner isn't going anywhere, Card might want to send a copy of his resume to Dearborn.
You may e-mail Edward Lapham at [email protected]