CNN poll: 61% now "dead set" against auto bailout

You should have flown commercial, boys.

In early November, polls indicated that nearly half the public supported federal assistance to the big automakers when this issue first came before Congress.

But evidence in surveys from other organizations suggests that the poor performance by executives from GM, Ford and Chrysler at congressional hearings, and the admission that they had taken private jets to get there, resulted in a steep drop in support for government assistance to automakers…

Opposition to the bailout of the auto industry is widespread across the country, even the Midwest, where the domestic automakers have their headquarters and many of their assembly plants.

The poll indicates that most opposition to the bailout comes from the West, where opposition reaches 67 percent. Sixty-one percent of those polled in the Northeast, 64 percent in the South and 53 percent in the Midwest oppose using federal dollars to help the automakers.

Here’s video from this afternoon of GM’s VP promising to streamline operations if he gets what he wants and warning that he’ll take 10 percent of American labor down with him if he doesn’t. See page two of this IHT story for the job-cutting, factory-closing, debt-renegotiating details, which turn out to be not very detail-oriented at all. The White House isn’t ruling anything out, but in light of tonight’s poll and the fact that Obama supports a bailout, what possible reason does the GOP have to help push through a comprehensive plan? If they want to give GM $4 billion to keep them in business until Inauguration Day, so be it. Then The One can dine on this crap sandwich and suffer the political consequences. He’s already got the spin all set; it’ll be a good test of his “elevation” powers to see if he can BS people into changing their minds.

Update: Congress is already seeing results from driving a hard bargain. Harder than usual, anyway.