President Obama used this week’s address to celebrate developments stemming from last year’s auto industry recovery initiative. The President notes,

“Since General Motors emerged from bankruptcy, the auto industry has actually added 45,000 jobs – the strongest growth in a decade. And Chrysler announced an operating profit in the first three months of this year. . . What’s more, GM announced that it paid back its loans to taxpayers with interest, fully five years ahead of schedule. It won’t be too long before the stock the Treasury is holding in GM can be sold, helping to reimburse the American people for their investment. In addition, Chrysler Financial has already fully repaid with interest the loans it received to support auto financing.”

The President went on to note the cost to the American taxpayer:

“On Friday, in fact, the Treasury Department informed Congress that this financial rescue – which was absolutely necessary to prevent an even worse economic disaster – will end up costing taxpayers a fraction of what was originally feared.”

The White House received the news earlier this week.

via The Hill’s Blog Briefing Room:

by Michael O’Brien

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said that while the administration doesn’t believe that GM and Chrysler have escaped danger of another collapse, the news today represents a validation of the president’s decision to get involved with the automakers.

“I’m making the case that, looking back, almost a year later from the president making a very difficult and unpopular decision to loan money to G.M. and Chrysler, in order to go through a structured bankruptcy, and save 1 million to 3 million jobs,” Gibbs said, “I think we could all agree that the depth of our economic downturn would hardly have been helped with those million or so people additionally out of work.”

You can read the rest here.

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