WASHINGTON (CNN) – Help may soon be on the way to the struggling U.S. auto industry after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi backed off her opposition to using funds from a fuel-efficiency research program for a bailout, two congressional officials said Friday.
The significant move from Pelosi signals that the deadlock over rescuing Detroit may be over.
Congressional Republicans and President Bush support the idea of tapping the $25 billion advanced technology fund. Two officials familiar with compromise talks told CNN that the working target is $15 billion to $17 billion in bridge loans, intended to fund the struggling Big Three automakers through March.
Watch Congress mulls auto bailout
However, one senior Democratic congressional source told CNN that House and Senate committee staff will meet over the weekend to write a bill to provide $20 billion to $25 billion in assistance to the U.S. auto companies.
This aide said the "mathematicians were working" at how to reprogram the money by reducing a subsidy to come up with a figure that would be available for loans, despite an earlier report that only $7.5 billion was available from the fund passed last year for fuel efficiency research.
This aide said the bill could be on the House floor as early as Tuesday, but thought it was more likely that the Senate would vote on the bill first.
NO CORPRATE WELFARE! I lost my job back in October and have had absolutely NO LUCK finding another job in my field! And I've been out there EVERYDAY searching! Now my life savings is about to run dry! WHERE'S MY BAILOUT???? I'm not the least bit concerned about some FAT GREEDY CORPERATE CEO AND HIS TOP EXECUTIVES BONUS PACKAGES/ OVERINFLATED SALARY! THEY CAN ALL GO JUMP OFF THE ROOF OF THEIR CORPERATE HEADQUARTERS!!!!!!!
Anyone wanting the automakers to fail really don't get it. If they fail then unemployment rises. Guess who the burden falls on to provide benefits for the newly unemployed... the taxpayers.