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GM head footing the bill for private jet

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Who says the company can’t still have a private jet? General Motors CEO Edward E. Whitacre Jr. is footing the bill for today’s chartered flight to Washington in an effort to shake some of GM’s bailout baggage. Whitacre is making the trip to meet with congressional leaders and provide an update on GM’s restructuring. GM will also announce it’s repaying $5.8 billion in bailout loans ahead of its June deadline.

The Wall Street Journal delves a bit into the private jet controversy:

The tight schedule would have been nearly impossible to manage using commercial air travel. But the company doesn’t want a repeat of the controversy that ensued when Detroit’s auto CEOs arrived on Capitol Hill via separate private jets to plead for a multibillion-dollar bailout. The move was widely assailed as a sign Detroit auto companies had lost touch with the American public. GM and Chrysler LLC had to relinquish their private jets as a condition government aid. Ford Motor Co. didn’t receive a bailout, but has since reduced its fleet of private jets.

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