http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/p...ts-UAW-ahead-of-property-rights-44415057.html White House puts UAW ahead of property rights By: Michael Barone Senior Political Analyst 05/05/09 7:11 PM Last Friday, the day after Chrysler filed for bankruptcy, I drove past the company’s headquarters on Interstate 75 in Auburn Hills, Mich. As I glanced at the pentagram logo I felt myself tearing up a little bit. Anyone who grew up in the Detroit area, as I did, can’t help but be sad to see a once great company fail. But my sadness turned to anger later when I heard what bankruptcy lawyer Tom Lauria said on a WJR talk show that morning. “One of my clients,” Lauria told host Frank Beckmann, “was directly threatened by the White House and in essence compelled to withdraw its opposition to the deal under threat that the full force of the White House press corps would destroy its reputation if it continued to fight.” Lauria represented one of the bondholder firms, Perella Weinberg, which initially rejected the Obama deal that would give the bondholders about 33 cents on the dollar for their secured debts while giving the United Auto Workers retirees about 50 cents on the dollar for their unsecured debts. This of course is a violation of one of the basic principles of bankruptcy law, which is that secured creditors — those who lended money only on the contractual promise that if the debt was unpaid they’d get specific property back — get paid off in full before unsecured creditors get anything. Perella Weinberg withdrew its objection to the settlement, but other bondholders did not, which triggered the bankruptcy filing.