Democratic leaders begin laying out conditions for auto bailout

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic leaders are laying out the conditions Detroit's Big Three automakers must meet before Congress will consider a $25 billion bailout package.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are drafting a letter to the executives of GM, Ford and Chrysler asking for specific plans on how federal loans will help them survive. Pelosi calls it "another opportunity for them to say to the American people, 'Give us your money, because we will put it to good use."'

But the White House today blasted Congress for taking a Thanksgiving recess before doing anything to address the auto industry's problems. Press Secretary Dana Perino says it's "appalling that Congress decided to leave town" without addressing the problem. And she calls it "mind-boggling" to think "535 members of Congress" will be able to determine the viability of a company.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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