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Auto headlines: GM resumes political contributions

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Auto headlines: GM resumes political contributions


General Motors, which plans to sell its stock to the public, has made its first campaign contributions since 2008, Federal Election Commission reports show.

GM, 61% owned by the U.S. Treasury, resumed donations through its political action committee, according to the company's August FEC report, and has given $91,500 to candidates of both political parties. The PAC contributed $710,008 for the 2008 elections.

"Emerging as a new company, we are participating in the political process," said Greg Martin, a GM spokesman. "We will not sit on the sidelines while our competitors in other industries have their voices heard."

Among those receiving GM contributions were Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the No. 2 House Republican, and the leadership PAC of House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, a Maryland Democrat.

GM emerged from bankruptcy in July 2009 and received a $50-billion taxpayer bailout. The company is seeking to raise as much as $16 billion through its initial public offering.

Details about the political contributions can be found at: http://query.nictusa.com/cgi-bin/com_supopp/2009_C00076810

GM recalls CTS, CTS-V over glove compartment

General Motors said Monday it was recalling more than 20,000 Cadillac CTS and CTS-V vehicles to replace a glove compartment box that could lead to leg injuries in a crash.

GM says the recall involves nearly 5,000 all-wheel drive 2009 Cadillac CTS and CTS-V models and more than 15,000 vehicles from the 2010 model year.The automaker plans to begin notifying owners of the recall next month. Dealers will replace the glove compartment assembly at no charge.

Ex-GM metals manager banned from trading

A former General Motors metals manager was banned from trading commodities after bilking the automaker of $6.5 million through unauthorized aluminum transactions, according to U.S. regulators.

Daniel J. Bealko, the former global commodity manager for lightweight metals at GM, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of income-tax evasion on Nov. 5, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said Monday.

Bealko, who devised and implemented GM's aluminum-hedging strategies between 1996 and 2003, used the commodity markets to defraud GM by "knowingly engaging in unauthorized futures and options trading" from June 2003 to Dec. 7, 2003, the agency said.

Bealko, formerly of Clarkston, is in federal custody after he was sentenced to 70 months in prison and ordered to pay full restitution to GM, the CFTC said. He was banned permanently from trading, according to a commission order that was entered Monday.



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GM's PAC gives to Dems, Republicans

David Shepardson / Detroit News Washington Bureau

Washington -- After 18 months, General Motors Co.'s political action committee has resumed making political donations.

Records filed with the Federal Election Commission show GM contributed $48,000 to candidates on July 30.

GM and Chrysler Group LLC opted to stop making political donations after the companies won government bailouts. GM is a government owned corporation. The Treasury Department owns a 61 percent stake in GM it won for swapping about $43 billion of its $50 billion bailout.

The PAC contributed $5,000 to each of the campaigns of Rep. Dave Camp, R-Midland; Rep. John Dingell, D-Dearborn; and Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing; as well as to Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY.

Other $5,000 donations include to former Republican Rep. Roy Blunt's campaign for Missouri governor; Indiana's former Republican Sen. Daniel Coats' campaign to return to the Senate; and the gubernatorial campaign of former Rep. Rob Portman, R-Ohio.

The GM PAC also donated $1,000 to the unsuccessful re-election campaign of Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Detroit; and $2,000 to the re-election campaign of Rep. Gary Peters, D-Bloomfield Township.

From The Detroit News: http://www.detnews.com/article/20100921/AUTO01/9210409/1148/auto01/GM-s-PAC-gives-to-Dems--Republicans#ixzz10BsiDExu

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By Andrew Ganz

General Motors' political action committee is back to donating money to candidates in Washington, D.C., who support its policies and plans. The automaker has given $91,500 to both Republican and Democrat candidates, according to an August Federal Election Commission report.

“Emerging as a new company, we are participating in the political process,” said Greg Martin, a GM spokesman, in an interview with Bloomberg. “We will not sit on the sidelines while our competitors in other industries have their voices heard.”

Nearly every automaker makes political contributions to campaigns that favor certain special interests.

GM has given money to number two House Republican Eric Cantor of Virginia and the political action committee of House Majority Leader and Maryland Democrat Steny Hoyer.



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GM Resumes Campaign Contributions

By Josh Mitchell

General Motors Co. has resumed contributing to political campaigns, lifting a self-imposed ban on political spending adopted during the auto maker’s bankruptcy restructuring last year.

GM gave $90,500 to candidates running in the November elections, Federal Election Commission records show. The beneficiaries include midwestern lawmakers, mostly Democrats, who have traditionally supported the industry’s legislative agenda on Capitol Hill, including Sen. Debbie Stabenow and Rep. John Dingell of Michigan and Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio.

The list also includes House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R., Va.), who would likely assume a top leadership post if Republicans win control of the House in November.

While it’s hardly unusual for big companies like GM to make political contributions, GM’s situation is different because it is majority-owned by the U.S. government. GM is planning to return to the public stock markets later this year, allowing the U.S. to begin to sell off its roughly 61% stake in the company.

GM spokesman Greg Martin said the company stopped making political contributions in spring 2009 to focus on its taxpayer-financed bankruptcy reorganization.

“As we’ve emerged as a new company, we’re not going to sit on the sidelines as our competitors and other industires who have PACs are participating in the political process,” Martin said. He said the company’s politcal action committee is “an effective means for our employees to pool their resources and have their collective voice heard.”

He said the company has supported members of both parties who “approach issues thoughtfully” and “support a strong auto industry.”



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