Arizona Sen. John McCain was never a big fan of bailing out Chrysler and General Motors. And the losing 2008 Republican presidential candidate believes the government bailout ultimately will prove a failure, at least in the case of Chrysler.
"It was all about the unions," McCain told The Detroit News at Phoenix International Raceway, where he was grand marshal for a NASCAR race. "The unions didn't want to have their generous contracts renegotiated, so we put $80 billion into both GM and Chrysler. And anybody who believes that Chrysler is going to survive -- I'd like to meet them."
Chrysler declined comment for the story.
"We should have let them go into bankruptcy, emerge and become viable corporations," McCain said.
Well, the companies did go into bankruptcy, but in a prepackaged form sponsored by the government. The company emerged June 10 under new management led by Fiat S.p.A.
McCain expressed sympathy for hard-pressed Detroit but went on to say: "We have manufacturing plants all over the South which are not bound by some of the labor rules and contracts that make them noncompetitive."