February 28th, 2012
04:27 PM ET

Analysis: Obama sees 'load of you know what' from GOP

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama chose the day of the Michigan Republican primary for what might be his highest octane attack on the Republican candidates to date.

He hit them where the Obama team believes the GOP has the upper hand: the auto bailout.

Speaking to a fired up audience at a United Auto Workers conference in Washington, the president took a swipe at Mitt Romney without naming him telling the crowd, "some even said we should 'let Detroit go bankrupt.'"

Later he went after Republican opposition to the bailout by nearly cussing:

"They're saying that the problem is that you, the workers, made out like bandits in all of this; that saving the American auto industry was just about paying back unions. Really? Even by the standards of this town, that's a load of you-know-what!"

The crowd laughed, but the remarks are unusually pointed from a president who has mostly left direct attacks against Republican candidates to surrogates.

The president's bailout barrage appears mostly aimed at Governor Romney since he's the most outspoken critic of the government's auto-industry bailout; it's been years-in-the making and includes a 2008 New York Times op-ed entitled "Let Detroit Go Bankrupt." Santorum has also said he opposes the bailout.

A recent NBC/Marist poll shows Republican opposition to the government's rescue of the auto industry may help them in the Michigan primary but hurt in the general election. The poll shows 63% of all registered voters in Michigan support the auto bailout and, according to NBC's First Read, that includes 61% of independents. This is no doubt welcome news for the president's campaign looking ahead to the general election.

But 50% of GOP voters likely to turn out in the Michigan primary think the bailout was a bad idea. Only 42% of those likely to vote think the auto bailout was a good idea, so bailout politics could be a wash for Republicans in Michigan Tuesday.

Don't expect the president to stay quiet on the point. Democrats feel their prospects in Michigan are looking up. That's because the auto industry is on an upswing, according to the president the auto industry has added 200,000 new jobs and has a plan to add more, and unemployment in the state has fallen dramatically. While it's still a very high 9.3%, that's well below the 14.1% it hit in 2009.

The Obama campaign likes to say they see many paths to the 270 electoral votes needed to win re-election, but Democratic operatives close to the campaign believe Michigan is among the states the president must win if he's on a path to victory. Its 16 electoral votes are valuable and after all he's done for the state, if the president loses Michigan it won't bode well for his odds in the rest of the nation. So expect more talk of the successes of the auto bailout.

soundoff (58 Responses)
  1. Calluonurbs

    Obama has ruined our country and will be a ONE TERM POTUS. Sorry but it's gonna be fact. If you vote for him you are crazy and live under a rock. or your welfare check.
    RON PAUL 2012 or tyranny and the fall of US. Go do your research and come back to me kthxbye

    February 28, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • MacTown

      Wow...Take off your Right Wing Blinders! Open your closed mind, and see things for what they really are. Both Republicans and Democrats are responsible for the state of our economy! We are all pawns in the game that politicians love to play. If you want to change things, start by changing the way you gather your information! The internet is not always a reliable source! It has got to be more to life than being an Obama hater!

      February 28, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
      • Howard

        Eric Holder is the ultimate example of the fox guarding the chicken coup. This Attorney General, the highest law enforcement officer in the land ... who has sworn to uphold our laws ... who is one of the top recipients of the public's trust ... has betrayed the American people, and violated the principles of his office to the max. Holder and Obama, both should at the very least be prosecuted as accomplices to MASS MURDER, for their Fast and Furious debacle ... which resulted in the slaughter of over 200 innocent Mexicans ... and, that's in addition to all the other acts of malfeasance which they have engaged in. Like corrupt dictators, who are hung by their feet, once their power is finally taken, these two scoundrels deserve the worst punish possible !!!

        February 28, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
      • jean2009

        @ Howee...If I remember history right...(which is something you seem to have a problem with) back in 2008 Paul O'Neill referred to Henry Paulson's $700 billion bank rescue plan as:" "crazy" with "awful" consequences for the world's largest economy."

        But as always you like to delay history for anything that doesn't fit into your getting the facts to fit your revision of history.

        Seems to me the idea for a "Gun- Walking" type plan also existed before Eric Holder...and it was outlined in a briefing paper from November 16, 2007 by then Attorney General Michael Mukasey.


        February 29, 2012 at 10:41 am |
    • John Farren

      Well then call me crazy, but a President that saves an industry and averts 1.5 million people losing their jobs, halting the 800,000 job losses per month inherited from his predecessor, ending the Iraq war, getting bin Laden, destroying the majority of al Qaeda,. If that is what craziness is now defined as, I'll take it anyway over the BS the republicans are pushing.

      February 28, 2012 at 8:47 pm |
      • Jasie

        I wouldn't call it "saved" Americans own on third. Thank goodness for Ford–a real success story.

        February 29, 2012 at 7:43 am |
      • John

        "saved the industry"? Saved the union would be more like it. Just like the Airline industry, chapter 11 would have been the best way to go. The auto industry would have survived and the American people could have saved billions and billions. How much does GM still owe us – and as their stocks fall Americans lose more and more money. BO wants to give out millions for "incentives" to by Volts. How much will the law suits cost us when the blown up Volts people get their day in court? We are already out approximately 45 billion just from "tax breaks" to GM. This is the bailout that just keeps on taking.

        February 29, 2012 at 8:36 am |
      • sarahsmart

        John (no last name) "Just like the Airline industry, chapter 11 would have been the best way to go. The auto industry would have survived and the American people could have saved billions and billions"

        You are just another example of a misinformed voter being spoonfed bull by the right. Please do praytell how in the world the auto industry would have been able to afford to keep their employees on, pay their saleries, and increase advertising and production after filing a chaper 11. Thats ridiculous!

        February 29, 2012 at 9:30 am |
      • FLIndependent

        If only all you people that keep whining about the auto industry bailout would have been so vocal about the Iraq war. You all didn't seem to mind your tax dollars going to an illegal war that killed thousands of our young soldiers and thousands more of innocent Iraquis with absolutely nothing gained from it, but somehow saving the American auto industry and the jobs of thousands is just killing you – I just don't get the mindset. Are you all that hateful towards our President that when he spends your tax dollars to help American and its citizens that you go nuts over it??

        February 29, 2012 at 9:41 am |
      • Steveo


        Did any Dem for from Florida vote to authorize and fund the war? Did you happen to vote for that Dem who voted for the war? The problem with your statement is you appear to assume the GOP did this by themselves. Let's be honest here DEMS voted to authorized and fund the war! So I imagine you are more than willing to cast blame on the DEMS as well. THE UN and NATO agreed with the intel and since we fund them both, let's blame them too!

        February 29, 2012 at 9:58 am |
      • FLIndependent

        @Steveo – you totally missed my point. I know that Dems voted for the war which was stupid of them. However, I'm questioning whether you were so worked up over your precious tax dollars being used for it as you are saving the American auto industry. There is no comparison as to the amount going to the Iraq war and the auto bailout and there were NO rewards from the war but there are MANY from the bailout – do you see the difference??

        February 29, 2012 at 10:29 am |
      • Steveo


        Let me help you out just a little. First, hindsight turns everyone into a genius! We were attacked, remember? In the emotion and anger that shortly, folks want to protect this country! I remember seeing Pelosi and Reid clasping hands with the entirety of Congress while singing God bless America? You are basing your statement based upon HINDSIGHT and once again, hindsight turns all of us into geniuses! Hindsight says Iraq was wrong, Hindsight will also speak on the bailout! Your are comparing apples to insects! That is the difference!

        February 29, 2012 at 10:47 am |
      • jean2009

        @John (no last name)
        As always it seems you are hoping and banking for America to fail and not find a way to save American industries and jobs for American workers, union or otherwise. May I ask are you an American, or some foreign national posting on this site?

        Why does it seem to burn you up that American union jobs were saved? Was it because it was at the expense of some foreign country's citizens getting the job of manufacturing our cars.... at a slave labor wage?

        Do you see how spiteful and vindictive that sounds when stated in the way what you have said comes across?

        If saving the auto industry, saving jobs, and saving the Michigan economy was the only thing he had done....which it isn't .....I would still say good job Mr. President!

        February 29, 2012 at 11:03 am |
      • jean2009

        @ Steveo....Yes we were attacked. But do not forget for one moment it was not by Saddam Hussein. For that invasion there were a multitude of lies, cover ups, and deception to Congress and the American people. Weapons of Mass Destruction did not exist.

        February 29, 2012 at 11:17 am |
      • FLIndependent

        @Steveo – No, I'm not comparing apples to oranges as the whiners are all upset that Obama used tax dollars for the bailout (that were also used for Iraq). The fact that you mentioned we were attacked is reverting back to using an excuse for the war when everyone knew it was Al Queda that attacked us, not Iraq. Remember, Bush & Co were warned by Clinton and a memo that indicated an attack was imminent. What is your deal with the auto bailout really about other than it was Obama that did it. Do you honestly think McCain would have let it go under?

        February 29, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
      • Steveo

        You are right, Clinton did warn the Bush administration, all the while crushing the budgets of the intel community! Aas far as what McCain would have or not done is not relivent! The fact is we went to war with the consent of the Congress (DEMS and GOP). Here's another fact, the UAW was so emboldened, they actually wanted a seat on the GM board of directors! Again, hindsight make a genius of it all. Honesty requires everyone to acknowledge TARP was started under Bush and continued under Obama.

        Are there folks who are angry only because Obama did it? Honesty would require a yes answer. I don't think anyone really knows what the outcome would have been if they went bankrupt All folks can do is speculate. Speaking of speculating, if you have noted I only addressed the war in my previous posts. Yet you have speculated on my opinions on the bailout! Not cool FL, Not cool!

        February 29, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • Franny

      Still running scared!

      February 29, 2012 at 5:45 am |
    • Jasie

      The country is worse off now than ever. Instead of fixing the economy he has added 5T to the deficit. the costs of gas, utilities, and food have all "necessarily skyrocketing" The dollar is worth much less. He is killing our dollar,

      February 29, 2012 at 7:42 am |
      • jean2009

        Actually $1 Trillion of that can be attributed to President Obama the other $4 Trillion is the interest and payments on the debt accrued by George W. Bush.

        Deal with real facts when posting.

        February 29, 2012 at 11:05 am |
  2. Txjack

    I did not vote for Obama and will vote for anyone but him

    The only reason that Obama is sitting in the White House is:

    George Saros bought the election and put Obama in the White House.
    And his reelection has been bought and paid for again.

    By Saros and Big Oil as they are raping us now and will continue to do so for the next 4 years.

    How else do you explain a Jr Senator who had to claim Child care credit on his tax returns.
    And now that he is in the White House is claiming Foreign Tax Credit in excess of 1 million.


    The only president in history to claim Foreign Tax Credit.

    So explain that you Obama supporters I dare you. …

    February 28, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • John Farren

      Please... Secede from the union. It will save the rest of us taxpayers a lot of money and we can build a shorter fence on the border.

      February 28, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Ken

      He listed his children as dependents =0 oh no! get real TxJack. Romney has accounts in the Cayman islands, based on your logic that should be a whole lot worse considering he doesn't pay American taxes on that money,.

      February 29, 2012 at 12:39 am |
    • Jasie

      And his college and all school records are closed. Something smells.

      February 29, 2012 at 7:45 am |
      • jean2009

        @ Jasie
        In 1990, then Barack Obama was elected the first black President of the Harvard Law Review in its 104 year history...."elected" by his peers. I wonder why a body of student lawyers would consider him worthy of that very prestigious position? Could it have been the fact that he was highly intelligent, highly capable and considered very competent to fill that job? The Harvard Law Review is a journal written by legal scholars.

        You may want to look up who some of the well-known famous scholars who have been published in that journal. The list includes 7 Supreme Court justices past and present.

        Knowing that I won't worry about seeing the President's grades.

        February 29, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • FLIndependent

      Not sure what world you are living in but it isn't one based on reality. The economy is gaining momentum and guess what, Obama is still the President so it is his policies that are working. If it wasn't for all the obstruction he has had to deal with over the past 3 years the economy would be even stronger. The Dow is back over 13000, which it hasn't reached since mid 2008, the auto industry is booming, consumer confidence is up and things are moving in the right direction. Gas prices were over $4.00 under Bush so to say this is Soros doing it is ridiculous as everyone knows that the Repubs have more ties to the oil industry and will back them up any chance they get. Is it a coincidence that the gas prices hovered around $2.50 give or take the first two years of Obama's term when the Dems were in charge, but starting climbing and have been so ever since the Repubs took over the House – think about it???

      February 29, 2012 at 9:50 am |
    • jean2009

      The last I checked big oil = the Koch brothers.

      February 29, 2012 at 11:20 am |
    • jean2009

      I assume you have looked at the tax returns of all past presidents? Anyone who owns a mutual fund which invests in international/global/foreign stocks qualifies to claim a foreign tax credit. I'm sure most Americans with a retirement 401K or Roth Account have this worked out on their annual income tax.

      That you make a point of that only points out that you are a super idiot.

      February 29, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • jean2009

      @Dumbjack...If both you and your wife both work, and you hire a childcare professional or send your child to a nursery school, and pay that person or school for their service. Provided your child is less than age 13 you are allowed to claim to the maximum of $3000 for each child or $6000 for a maximum of 2 children.
      I assume you and many other people would qualify for a Child/Dependent Care Tax Credit on your income tax if you fell into that category.

      Let me see...the Bush daughters were over 13 when they came to the White House and G. W. Bush was not previously a senator or congressman.

      Are you an absolute moron?

      February 29, 2012 at 12:17 pm |
      • jean2009

        Sorry for the double "both".

        February 29, 2012 at 12:20 pm |
  3. Brian

    They did make out like bandits! When the bail out came down, the union stock holders got paid, the average stock/bond holder lost their money. Obama is a joke and needs to go. He just spouts off buzz words to the sheep who eat it up because they can't think for themselves. Also, don't forget Bush bailed them out first, so he can't even take all the credit for the bail out. What an idiot.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
  4. jerry

    GM posted a big profit for 2011... but remember they paid no interest expenses (they stiffed their bond holders), they were able to use the $45,000,000,000 old loss write off (part of the sweetheart bankruptcy deal)..and the taxpayer still owns them! GM has to fund the retirement of 500,000 retirees who's healthcare and pensions are horribly underfunded...and they haven't hardly began to deal with this (big profit year..hahah). Wait until after the elections when this pensioners have to face the music... will the govt bail out their pensions? How will GM compete without these obama funded programs? This is a big gulp! This is reality...not obama BS.

    February 28, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • Vielka

      Posted on I’d must test with you here, which isn't something I ulslauy do! I get pleasure from reading a post that will make folks think. Thanks for permitting me to remark!

      April 2, 2012 at 10:10 am |
  5. Txjack

    So if Obama helped bail out and save the Auto Industry.

    Why does he not do something to help the Airline Industry?

    Is it because he has vested interests in seeing them fail?

    Or is it because his handler George Saros is telling him what to do.

    February 28, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
  6. Joey

    He was speaking to the UAW so naturally he used the dog whistles that would get him applause. He already has their vote so this was simply preaching to the choir.

    February 28, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
  7. Txjack

    Obama will never do anything about the gas prices except let them rise.
    He has NO interest in having the gas prices go down.

    The only reason that Obama is sitting in the White House is:

    George Saros bought the election and put Obama in the White House.
    And his reelection has been bought and paid for again.

    Saros and Big Oil are raping us now and will continue to do so for the next 4 years.

    How else do you explain a Jr Senator who had to claim Child care credit on his tax returns.
    And now that he is in the White House is claiming Foreign Tax Credit in excess of 1 million.
    And he will provide detailed info on what they are.


    The only president in history to claim Foreign Tax Credit.

    So explain that you Obama supporters I dare you. …

    February 28, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
    • Kaden717

      Take a politics class, we vote for the president, no one buys anything. And the president has nothing to do with the cost of gas, and our gas is relatively low compared to Europe. You need to settle down and do some research and take a U.S. government course before you spew foolish nonsense.

      February 28, 2012 at 7:27 pm |
    • John Farren

      So wise one, please explain what the President should do to bring down gas prices. Maybe he can snap his fingers and we will have more refining capacity. Maybe he can wave his hands and Koch Industries will quit manipulating the price of oil in the commodities market, or maybe he can give a speech and suddenly the oil companies will quit sending oil refined in the states to China. And if he were able to control or do
      any of those three things, you would be blathering on about socialism and interference in the free market...

      February 28, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • Franny

      Anyone with a brain knows any President Democrat, or Republican have no control over gas prices. Please educate yourself. Thank You.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:44 am |
  8. Txjack

    sorry did not mean to repost

    February 28, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • jean2009

      Idiot much!

      February 29, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  9. MesaMax

    Of course, Obama paid off the unions. At the expense of the bondholders, who have highest priority in a bankruptcy. So the only way Obama could make the unions happy was to make sure a bankrupty couldn't happen. Obama got a two-fer on this. He paid off the unions and got the credit for "saving" GM. But the taxpayers are out about half a billion dollars in the bailout, which will never be repaid. Obama forgot to mention that in his little speech.

    February 28, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • jerry

      it will cost him (obama)...46% of the electorate will NOT vote for obama no matter what...so once the GOP actually starts to run against obama and the senate (senate has NO approval at all and den controlled) the facts will be out in the domain...even the press will be forced to report against obama...he is roadkill!

      February 28, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
  10. george of the jungle

    all the crap the repos have said about our president. he's a snob he's a lier he's a socialist. Come on was the president really to out spoken?. You report all this other stuff and he say full of you know what and you go crazy. You call that cussing. Boy anything for a headline. Obama 2012

    February 28, 2012 at 7:26 pm |
  11. dontbow

    Obamya is buried in "You know what" but from his own mouth. lol

    February 28, 2012 at 7:50 pm |
  12. Steveo

    That "load of you know what" statement is easily applied to SOME of BOTH sides of the aisle!

    February 28, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
  13. James

    If Obama's lips are moving, he's ly##g–End of story–What a windbag–We deserve better–

    February 28, 2012 at 10:48 pm |
  14. Franny

    I cannot wait to watch President Obama during the debates. He's going to tear them up! Obama 2012!

    February 29, 2012 at 5:42 am |
    • Jasie

      Not this time. We know he lies.

      February 29, 2012 at 7:54 am |
    • John

      Right, more class warfare, more tax and spend. It is all he knows.

      February 29, 2012 at 8:38 am |
      • jean2009

        Oh that "class warfare" is something dreamed up by the GOP1% because they can't come up with a logical good reason for their not paying higher taxes....they certainly can't believable pull out that old saw about them being the "job creators".

        February 29, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
    • sarahsmart

      Amen, Franny!

      February 29, 2012 at 9:34 am |
  15. gale

    the auto industry has paid back thier loans! they are showing a big profit plus are hiring like crazy. we have a big conpany here in hillsdale that wants to hire and has hired more than 8oo jobs in this community. the bailout worked. so yes it is Preisdent Obama all the way.

    February 29, 2012 at 7:24 am |
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  16. Jasie

    Gas prices are up, We owe 5T more than when he came into office, 15% are unemployed. He must be giddy.

    February 29, 2012 at 7:53 am |
    • jean2009

      Actually $1 Trillion can be attributed to President Obama the other $4 Trillion can be attributed to paying for George W. Bush's mistakes.

      February 29, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  17. John

    Yes, both parties brought us to this point, but ultimately the person who has been in THE leadership position is responsible. We all know he like to "deflect" everything negative, but he owns it – just like if times were good – he would own that also.

    February 29, 2012 at 8:31 am |
    • jean2009

      Well today the stock market is around 13,000 which is near the all time high. Unemployment was 8.2% for January ...so it may be down to 8 % or 7.9% for February. Detroit is again turning a profit. Osama bin Laden is dead, Iraq War is over.... times are getting better...it looks like he is going to get to own that with all his hard work times are better ....I'm sure you are as pleased as punch about that...right?

      February 29, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
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