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Michael Savage is a big fan of Eastwood, but when the legendary actor appeared in a Super Bowl ad that held up the government’s bailout of Chrysler as a pillar on which to build the country’s economic recovery, the talk-radio host called a foul.
Eastwood’s much-discussed commercial, “It’s Halftime in America,” strikes a somber tone, noting “people are out of work” but pointing to the aftermath of the $12.5 billion bailout of the auto giant as a sign of hope.
“The people in Detroit know something about this,” Eastwood says of the harsh economic conditions of the past several years. “They almost lost everything. But we all pulled together. Now Motor City is fighting again.”
But Savage told his listeners that while most Americans believe that Chrysler repaid the loan, “if you read the fine print, Chrysler ran off with $1.3 billion.”
“It was astonishing for a man who allegedly is somewhat conservative … to be talking about bailing out the auto industry,” Savage said of Eastwood.
Savage traced the $12.5 billion that the Treasury Department gave Chrysler in 2009. Last year, the Italian automaker Fiat bought the government’s 6 percent stake in Chrysler, which closed the books on the feds’ involvement.
In the end, taxpayers were out $1.3 billion.
As WND reported, Eastwood called Savage on the air in 2003 to respond to criticism of the actor’s latest movie, which the talk host saw as an indication that “Hollywood is concerned about the impact of millions of patriotic Americans who listen to talk radio.”
Savage said at the time that he had learned from a mutual friend that Eastwood, who served a two-year term as mayor of Carmel, Calif., in the 1980s, regularly listened to his show.
“The Savage Nation” airs live Monday through Friday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern. It can be heard online through stations such as KSTE in Sacramento.