Susan J. Demas: Big government saved the auto industry –– and Michigan

As people from around the globe descend on Detroit for the annual auto show, signs of the 2009 auto bailout's success are everywhere.

That's why President Barack Obama is scheduled to drop by for a victory lap.

In 2015, U.S. auto sales hit a record 17.5 million, with General Motors sales up 8 percent, prompting the once-collapsing company to revise its '16 earnings forecast upward.

Chrysler, whose new Pacifica has been dubbed the unlikely "star of the auto show," saw sales rise 7 percent last year.

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