House Subcommittee Hearing 6/22/2011

U. S. House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending

Hearing 6/22/2011 to address issues related to the subcommittee’s interest in the

“Lasting Implications of the General Motors Bailout.”

Composite file - Testimonies, Links, and Examples of Media Coverage and Congressional Support

Testimonies Provided to the Subcommittee Hearing
DSRA testimony and the testimonies of other representatives as provided to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending.  Thanks to Bruce Gump and the DSRA Leadership Team for preparing and submitting this important material.

Update 6/29/2011 - DSRA Submitted an Addendum to Testimony to clarify issues raised in dialog during the Hearing.
Click here for DSRA Addendum to the Testimony
Click here for complete DSRA Testimony, with the addendum

Click here for Other Testimonies

Video and pictures from the Hearing
Click here for video of the entire Hearing (C-SPAN).
Click here for video time stamps (to view specific segments of the Hearing)

Click here for pictures of DSRA representatives and advisors who attended who attended the Hearing.

Articles Commenting on the Subcommittee Hearing
Updated 7/19/2010
(Some of these articles are also posted separately)

Driving to delusionville
Obama’s former auto czar is in deep denial about wasteful bailout
By Shikha Dalmia | Thursday, June 30, 2011
~ the administration took matters in its own hands, using taxpayer dollars to commandeer the bankruptcy process to protect key constituencies, while giving short shrift to others. ~ The administration favored union workers not only over creditors, but also other workers. All United Auto Workers retirees at Delphi, GM’s auto supplier, got 100 percent of their pension and retirement benefits. But 21,000 nonunion, salaried employees lost up to 70 percent of their pensions, and all of their life and health insurance. The Treasury could have covered 93 percent of the benefits of all employees for the same funds it spent on full union benefits, testified Bruce Gump, a representative of the Delphi Salaried Retirees Association. ~~~
Click here for the article

Obama administration favored union worker pensions in GM bailout, House Republicans say
Andrew Seidman, LA Times  June 23 2011
House Republicans lashed out at what they called preferential treatment the Obama administration gave to certain union pensions in the bailout of General Motors Corp ~~ Republicans accused the administration of favoring union employees of Delphi Corp., the largest U.S. supplier of auto parts, and leaving many nonunion, salaried employees empty-handed ~~ Roughly 21,000 salaried employees lost up to 70% of their pensions, as well as life and health insurance. ~~ The administration picked winners and losers where the pensions of many salaried Delphi workers were lost.
Click here for the LA Times article

Panel Hears Complaints on Pensions at Delphi
By MARY WILLIAMS WALSH  New York Times  June 22, 2011
A Congressional panel heard complaints Wednesday [6/22/2011] that the Obama administration had created pension winners and pension losers when it led the bankruptcy overhauls of the auto companies in 2009, despite federal rules meant to weave a uniform safety net for retirees. ~ “It is frightening to even think about allowing this precedent to stand,” said Bruce Gump, a retiree of Delphi who lost part of his benefit when the federal government took over Delphi’s pension plan in bankruptcy — even though other Delphi retirees got special payments to shield them from such losses. ~ Mr. Gump and others who testified argued that this two-tiered outcome had undermined the rule of law in bankruptcy, where retirees with underfunded pensions were normally considered unsecured creditors, whether they belonged to unions or not. ~~~
Click here for the New York Times article.

Auto czar Ron Bloom grilled by House panel on rescue

WASHINGTON – Senior White House aide Ron Bloom ~~ was grilled today by members of a House Oversight subcommittee – who barraged him with a long string of heated accusations over the auto rescue and its aftermath. ~~~
Click here for the Detroit Free Press article.

GM bailout ripped during House panel hearing
DAVID SHEPARDSON / Detroit News Washington Bureau  June 22, 2011

The chairman of a House panel sharply criticized the government's $50 billion bailout of General Motors Co.  ~~ The government's decision to put GM through a quick bankruptcy "desecrated the rule of law" and favored union members over other creditors, he argued, and set "dangerous precedents." ~~~
Click here for the Detroit News article.

Private emails detail Obama admin involvement in cutting non-union worker pensions post-GM bailout
By Matthew Boyle - The Daily Caller   3:12 PM 06/22/2011

New emails obtained by The Daily Caller contradict claims by the Obama administration that the Treasury Department would avoid “intervening in the day-to-day management” of General Motors post-auto bailout. ~~ These messages reveal that Treasury officials were involved in decision-making that led to more than 20,000 non-union workers losing their pensions ~~ to expedite GM’s emergence from bankruptcy. ~~~
Click here for the Daily Caller article.

GOP hammers Bloom on rescue
WASHINGTON -- Salaried retirees of auto supplier Delphi may have had some satisfaction Wednesday when House Republicans took up their cause, tearing into senior White House aide and former auto task force member Ron Bloom over the 2009 rescue of General Motors. ~~ The panel's majority Republicans kept Bloom in the hot seat longer than expected, grilling him with heated accusations over the auto rescue and its aftermath. ~~ Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., who chairs the full oversight committee, and Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., both referred to Delphi's salaried retirees as being "screwed" when they lost their pensions during GM's restructuring.
Click here for the Detroit Free Press article.

Congress hashes over GM bailout
Sabrina Eaton, The Plain Dealer Updated: Wednesday, June 22, 2011, 5:41 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Members of a House of Representatives subcommittee on Wednesday accused the Obama administration of making politically motivated decisions in picking the winners and losers in the General Motors and Chrysler bankruptcies. ~~ Members of Congress also questioned why salaried employees of GM's bankrupt parts supplier, Delphi, got a worse pension deal during the bankruptcy than their union counterparts. ~~ "They kicked us to the curb while taking good care of their supporters," ~~ "The administration's unprecedented involvement was political, illegal, unethical and immoral."
Click here for the Plain Dealer article.

Local Delphi retirees plead case to House.
Argue pension cuts were unfair in Washington hearing

June 23, 2011 By LARRY RINGLER - Business, Tribune Chronicle |
Declaring that salaried retirees have lost houses, declared bankruptcy and seen families dissolve, local Delphi Corp. retiree Bruce Gump on Wednesday told a Congressional subcommittee that the group will continue to fight to reclaim benefits earned over decades with the auto parts supplier. ~~ "We will stand on the side of right and will fight. We need your help to win," ~~ Gump called cuts by federal pension insurer Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. of 30 percent to 70 percent in monthly pension checks for younger Delphi workers "political, illegal, unethical and immoral." ~~ "Even though the government is charged with protecting all citizens, they did nothing for the salaried," he said. "They cared for the groups that were rich and large enough to retaliate." ~~~
Click here for the Tribune Chronicle article.

Daily Caller: Emails reveal White House threw Delphi pensioners under the bus
Henry Payne/ The Michigan  June 23. 2011 1:00AM
Last September, I wrote on how the White House Auto Task Force gutted Delphi salaried workers' pensions to appease the UAW:  Constructing their UAW bailout a year ago, the White House Auto Task Force ran roughshod — Chicago-style — over secured bondholders' rights in order to secure a deal for Big Labor. Less well known is that secretaries, engineers, designers, and other salaried men and women were getting kneecapped, as well. ~~ As the administration rushed to complete GM's bankruptcy last May, the question of Delphi was a pressing issue. ~~ when it came time to resolve Delphi pensioners, Delphi's salaried workers were thrown overboard even as the UAW's pensions were made whole. ~~ New emails obtained by The Daily Caller ~ reveal that Treasury officials were involved in decision-making that led to more than 20,000 non-union workers losing their pensions. ~~ the emails TheDC obtained show high-ranking Treasury Department officials ~ corresponding with senior GM officials on how to make certain decisions regarding who was going to win and who was going to lose. ~~~
Click here for the Michigan View article.

House members urge restoration of pensions for Delphi retirees
By Thomas Gnau, Staff Writer Updated 8:45 PM Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Members of the U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday urged legislation that would pay all Delphi retirees their full pensions. ~~ “These Delphi retirees are entitled to these benefits,” said U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-OH/Centerville ~~ “These benefits were wrongly taken from them.” ~~ “I’d like to know why the salaried employees got chopped up so badly,” U.S. Rep. Dan Burton, R-Indiana, asked Ron Bloom, who advised the Obama administration on assisting GM. ~~ Bloom ~ acknowledged that some stakeholders received “far, far less than they were promised.”
Click here for the Dayton Daily News article.

The General Motors Management Lie.
Further adventures with the most transparent administration in history.
by  John Hayward Human Events 6/23/2011
Back in June of 2009, when General Motors went bankrupt ~~ President Obama declared, “What we are not doing – what I have no interest in doing – is running GM. ~~ The House Oversight Committee ~ should call Matthew Boyle of theDaily Caller to testify, because he’s been leafing through some Treasury emails, and he might just have the answer. ~~ these emails “show high-ranking Treasury Department officials, including Matthew Feldman of Treasury’s Auto Task Force, corresponding with senior GM officials on how to make certain decisions regarding who was going to win and who was going to lose.” ~~ Among the losers are non-unionized salaried employees of General Motors spinoff company Delphi, whose pensions were cut “to expedite GM’s emergence from bankruptcy,” as Boyle puts it.  The Obama Administration worked hard to make sure its union friends were spared any such inconveniences, as the Detroit Free Press notes that a billion dollars was set aside “to ‘top up’ the pensions of most union retirees, including those from the United Auto Workers union, so they wouldn’t lose benefits.” ~~ how often does the Obama Administration have to make it clear that the only way to gain protection from them is to join a union?
Click here for the Human Events article.

Abandoning Even the Pretense of Neutrality
June 23, 2011, 10:17 am (blog)
The Obama administration has abandoned even the pretense of not being in the tank for its union supporters. ~ First, it handed took ownership of GM away from secured creditors and gave it to the UAW. ~ Finally, comes news that the Obama Administration worked to trash pensions of non-unionized auto workers while protecting pensions of union workers. ~ Kyle: Yup, that was my father. 33 years at Delphi working 60 hour weeks, traveling extensively, dealing with tremendous stress trying to keep the business afloat ~ So in the end the very people who drove the company into bankruptcy were made whole while the ones who spent a career working diligently to produce quality products and run a profitable business ~ are now seeing pensions a third to a half what they were planning on for the last decade of their careers.
Click here for the CoyoteBlog.

Congressional Support Releases:

Rep. Bill Johnson Questions Obama Administration Officials About Delphi Retirees Losing Pensions in GM Taxpayer-Funded Bailout
Washington, Jun 22 - Congressman Bill Johnson (R-Marietta, OH) today questioned Obama Administration officials regarding the decision-making process that led to non‑union, salaried Delphi retirees losing their pensions in the federal government’s bailout of General Motors. ~ Rep. Johnson questioned Ron Bloom, special assistant to the President of the United States and Vincent Snowbarger, deputy director for operations of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation ~ “Mr. Bloom I find it hard to believe that all were treated fair considering that the Delphi salary retirees lost 30% to 70% of their pensions, all of their healthcare benefits, and all of their life insurance while the hourly retirees retained their full pension and health benefits." ~ [To Mr Snowbarger] “Why then is the PBGC fighting so hard to release the records of the PBGC decision making process that led up to the termination? Because it seems like you are hiding something to protect both the PBGC and the President’s Auto Task Force ~ " ~~~
Click here for Rep. Bill Johnson's release and questions at the Hearing.

Senator Portman Supports Retired Delphi Workers Who Lost Pension Benefits, at Congressional Hearing
WASHINGTON, D.C. June 22, 2011 – Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) and Representative Dave Camp (R-MI) submitted a letter during today’s Congressional hearing to support the testimony of retired Delphi salaried workers – including Ohioan Bruce Gump – who did not receive equal treatment during the General Motors bankruptcy. ~~~
Click here for Sen. Portman's release and letter.

Congressman Camp Demands Answers for Automotive Retiree Victims 
Washington, D.C., Jun 22, 2011 - ~ U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and U.S. Rep. Dave Camp (R-Midland) submitted a letter together in support of the Subcommittee’s efforts to examine the decision made by the president’s Auto Policy Task Force to “top-up” the pension benefits of union retirees from Delphi but not those of salaried retirees from the same company. ~~ “These men and women earned their pensions the American way, through hard work and dedication. However, these salaried retirees will lose a significant portion of their pension benefits, while those they worked next to for years will receive their full promised benefits. ~~~ ”
Click here for Rep. Camp's release.