While President George W. Bush has admitted his distaste for any bailout schemes for the Detroit 3, Senator Barack Obama has proclaimed support for a $4 billion aid package to the American auto industry, which would see research and development into fuel efficient vehicles boosted.

The aid package is part of an economic stimulus bill being proposed by Michigan Democrats, and would provide around $3.75 billion dollars to the auto industry in the form of low-interest loans, rather than being a strict bailout payment.

An extra $250 million would be included on top of the $3.75 billion to promote research into battery technology to make electric vehicles more practical and efficient.

Senator John McCain is opposed to the $4 billion loan package, stating that the proposals he has already made would likely achieve the same results as the loan package without adding further strain to the U.S. treasury. McCain is proposing a $300 million prize for advanced battery technology breakthroughs, as well as offering consumers $5,000 for purchasing fuel efficient vehicles, according to the Detroit Free Press.

The United Auto Workers union is backing the loan program endorsed by Obama, and the auto industry itself is becoming more eager to seek out help where it is being offered in order to boost falling profits and sales. What impact, if any, this whole affair may have on the upcoming presidential elections or on the industry's future outlook, is unknown, but the positions taken now on the industry and its tough economic position could end up being some of the defining features of each candidate's platforms.