U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today announced that he is co-sponsoring legislation to require the Treasury Department to distribute to individual taxpayers all its stock in General Motors (GM) and Chrysler within one year following the companies' emergence from bankruptcy proceedings.
"I believe it was obvious back in December 2008 that a structured bankruptcy was the correct path for GM and Chrysler to restructure their debt and contracts. By giving these companies taxpayer funds from TARP, the administration only delayed the inevitable, but worse created a situation where the government became a part owner of private business," Isakson said. "This common-sense legislation I am co-sponsoring would get the government out of the American auto business and put this stock back in the hands of the American people."
The Auto Stock for Every Taxpayer Act, introduced by U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., would require Treasury to distribute its common stock holdings in both companies evenly to every American who paid taxes on April 15.
The legislation also would prohibit the Treasury from using any more TARP funds to bailout GM or Chrysler and would require that the Secretary of the Treasury and his designee have a fiduciary responsibility to the American taxpayer to maximize the return on that investment as long as the government holds stock in the companies.