UAW Targets GM on Contract

Car giant chosen as lead company in crucial talks
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2007 8:25 AM CDT
Assemblyman Brian Mullins works on a Ford Expedition at the automaker's Michigan Truck plant in Wayne, Mich.(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The United Auto Workers have chosen General Motors to be the lead company in negotiations on contracts set to expire tonight, adding pressure to strike a deal the UAW will then try to impose on Ford and Chrysler. The union chose GM because it's in the best financial shape of the three,'' an analyst tells Bloomberg.

The New York Times interprets the move as signalling the union's  willingness to discuss the GM proposal to set up a union-managed trust to assume GM's early $100 billion in health-care liabilities. The "voluntary employee benefit association" has been GM's major demand in talks, which are expected to stretch beyond the deadline, possibly into next week.