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52% Say GM Somewhat Likely to Repay Taxpayers

Just over half of Americans think General Motors and Chrysler may repay their taxpayer bailouts, but that doesn’t change the negative view of future bailouts.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 52% of Adults think it is at least somewhat likely that all the taxpayer money invested in GM and Chrysler will be repaid. Forty-one percent (41%) say full repayment is unlikely. Those figures include 24% who say GM is Very Likely to fully re-pay the taxpayers and 12% who say it is Not At All Likely to do so. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

These findings mark little change from November just after GM announced a $15.8 billion public stock offering that allowed the federal government to reduce its ownership stake in the company from 61% to 36%.

But also unchanged is the view Americans have of bailouts in general. Looking back, just 30% of Likely U.S. Voters believe the bailouts of banks, auto and insurance companies were good for the United States.

Thirty-eight percent (38%) of Americans now think it was a good idea to bail out GM and Chrysler. Nearly half (49%) think it was a bad idea. Last summer, 57% viewed the auto bailouts as bad. Then, amidst the hoopla surrounding the GM IPO last fall, the number viewing the auto bailouts in a negative light fell sharply to 46%.

Fifty-four percent (54%) of Democrats say it was a good idea for the federal government to provide bailout funding for GM and Chrysler. Sixty-eight percent (68%) of Republicans and a plurality (48%) of adults not affiliated with either major party disagree.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The national survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted on February 11-12, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.?

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