Morning Brief: Obama presses Bush on Detroit bailout
Top Story Meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush in the Oval Office Monday, President-elect Barack Obama pressed for emergency aid to U.S. automakers, which face severe headwinds after a sustained period of high gas prices followed by the credit crisis. Bush indicated he might support some type of auto-industry bailout in exchange for passage ...
Meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush in the Oval Office Monday, President-elect Barack Obama pressed for emergency aid to U.S. automakers, which face severe headwinds after a sustained period of high gas prices followed by the credit crisis.
Bush indicated he might support some type of auto-industry bailout in exchange for passage of the free-trade agreement with Colombia. Democrats in Congress are already working on legislation to give automakers access to the $700 billion in bailout funds for Wall Street.
Shares in General Motors closed at $3.36 yesterday, a 60-year low.
As for his new digs, Obama thought he’d inherit “a pretty nice office.”
Obama is considering a more regional approach to the war in Afghanistan, the Washington Post reports.
Transition tidbits: Obama is “leaning toward” asking Defense Secretary Robert Gates to stay, according to staffers. And he’s said to be considering former Hillary Clinton aide Patty Solis Doyle for the Cabinet secretary position.
The U.S. Treasury Department may need to commit more than $100 billion to Fannie Mae after the mortgage company posted $29 billion in net losses during the third quarter. Also, Treasury may need to ask Congress for more funds to keep insurer AIG afloat.
The Washingon Post wonders if the federal bailouts are actually making these companies’ problems worse.
Asian and European markets moved lower in Tuesday trading.
Mexico is hedging nearly all its oil exports.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon named a new interior minister to replace the one killed in a plane crash last week.
Caracas, Venezuela, has become a salon for international leftists.
Pakistan’s military is destroying the Taliban stronghold of Bajaur in order to save it.
Chen Shui-bian, Taiwan’s former president, was shown on TV in handcuffs but has yet to be arrested on corruption charges.
Time magazine’s Simon Elegant wonders if China is launching its own version of the New Deal.
Middle East and Africa
Iran’s conservatives are closing ranks behind President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
The Sunni fighters known as “Sons of Iraq” are leaving the U.S. payroll.
Syria accuses Lebanon’s main Sunni party of funding al Qaeda-linked militants.
Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe is moving ahead with plans to form a government.
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi isn’t the only European politician making racially charged comments about Barack Obama.
The ethnically Georgian town of Perevi is becoming a flashpoint as Russian troops withdraw, leaving South Ossetians forces in control.
German investor confidence is on the rise, surprisingly.
Today’s in Veterans’ Day in the United States.
European leaders are commemorating the 90th anniversary of the end of World War I.
Maldives swears in its first new president in three decades.
Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Blake Hounshell is a former managing editor of Foreign Policy.
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