The retooling of America's political landscape has left Detroit painfully short on friends and settling for "tough love"—or no love at all—these days, Gerald F. Seib writes in the Wall Street Journal. Foreign automakers building plants in red states have become cozy with GOP lawmakers, while the Democratic support the Big Three once counted on has been eroded by the rise of green-leaning leaders, Seib notes.
That shift helps explain "a bizarre anomaly," writes Seib: Citigroup and AIG, "a company that doesn't even make anything shiny a lawmaker can lay a hand upon," get big sums from the government, while the Big Three failed to secure a simple $25 billion bridge loan. On the bright side, Seib notes, Barack Obama seems like he genuinely wants to remain among the industry's friends, despite his tough talk. "That would be good for the Big Three, because otherwise that list has grown shorter."