Control Emerges as Key Issue in Detroit Rescue Bills

House version calls for tough steps to make US industry more viable
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 18, 2008 2:35 AM CST
An autoworker leaves the GM Powertrain facility in Warren, Mich., earlier this month. The firm lost $2.5 billion in the third quarter and warns that it could run out of cash in 2009.    (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
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(Newser) – Competing versions of a rescue package for US automakers have hit the floors of the House and Senate, the Detroit Free Press reports. The bills, both of which face fierce opposition from Republicans, draw on the $700 billion bailout allotted to the finance sector and call for similar limits on executive pay, though the House version sets out much stricter conditions for automakers.

While the Senate version requires the Big Three and their suppliers to draw up more sustainable business plans that include better fuel efficiency for their products, the House version gives the government actual veto power over automakers’ major decisions—as well as stock options that could add up to  a majority ownership in at least one of the disintegrating companies. Auto chiefs will plead their case before the Senate today and the House tomorrow.