On another network this morning, Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm described former General Motors chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner as a "sacrificial lamb" in the Obama administration's attempts to force US automakers to, in their view, aggressively restructure.
A "sacrificial lamb"?
Under Wagoner's tenure, GM's market share declined from 29% in 2000, when Wagoner took the reins, to its 2008 rate of 20%.
When he took control of the company, the stock was peaking around $90 a share. It's currently below $3 a share. That's about $50 billion in shareholder wealth that has vanished.
GM in the last two years has lost $70 billion.
And then there's the restructuring plan Wagoner submitted to the Treasury Department last month, one the Obama administration considers weak, with unrealistic sales assessments and insufficient urgency.
"The GM plan, in its current form, is not viable and will need to be restructured substantially," a senior administration official says.
Obviously, not all of this can be blamed on Wagoner, and GM has made a number of advances.
But as the chairman and CEO, shall we say, the Buick stops with him. - jpt