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Bridge Loan Goes Down In The Senate — What Happens Now?

231115832_18ccf78457_m.thumbnail.jpgLast night, the auto bill failed by a vote of 52-35. Four Democrats didn’t show up, two defected (Tester and Lincoln), and Reid’s vote was procedural. That’s 59. Two Republicans switched their votes after it was clear the bill was going down to "nays."

Now I don’t know what would’ve happened if there was actually a chance of cloture, but I do know that nobody whipped for this. Obama did not whip for it like he did the $700 billion bank bailout.

Reid and Obama never wanted the money to come out of the 136 (Energy bill) funds in the first place. With this act, they force Bush’s hand.

And the UAW are the fall guys this morning as the market tanks. The chyron on MSNBC: "Auto legislation falls apart after UAW refuses to cut wages in the next 2 years."

They’re counting on the fact that Bush and Paulson won’t let their Wall Street buddies fail, and will take the money out of the TARP funds. There’s probably a pretty good chance that will happen.

But it if does, they get to set the terms of the deal — and does anyone think it’s going to be pretty for labor?

Meanwhile, AIG just told 168 of its top employees they will receive "retention bonuses" of between $96,000 and $4 million this year.

White people in New York white collar jobs will have happy Christmases. Black people in Detroit blue collar jobs get the shaft.

I’m pretty sure the only chance the union had for fair terms was the passage of this bill. I hope to be wrong.

Update: UAW’s Gettelfinger at a press conference this morning says he wonders if they were being "set up."

Update II: Cheney is saying it’s "Hoover time." It looks like a breakdown between the GOP’s corporate cons and the Red state culture warriors.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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