A new poll shows that 61% of the public opposes bailing out the Big Three automakers. Via CNN Money:

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — A majority of Americans oppose a bailout of the troubled U.S. auto industry, according to a poll released Wednesday.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll, conducted by telephone on Dec. 1-2 with nearly 1,100 people, showed that 61% of those surveyed oppose government assistance for the major U.S. automakers.

That isn’t surprising; the public also opposed the TARP and with good reasons. It wasn’t fair to taxpayers and it hasn’t worked. Maybe the public knows something Congress doesn’t. The public also doesn’t think an auto industry bailout would help the economy:

A full 70% of respondents indicated that a bailout is unfair to taxpayers.

In addition to being unfair, the poll showed that a majority of those surveyed think a bailout would not help the economy.

Sandeep Dahiya, a professor of finance at Georgetown University, said the poll results were “quite surprising.” The large percentage of those opposed to the bailout “tells you much about how what is good for GM is not good for America.”

Ms. Dahiya may find it surprsing but I don’t. American are still blessed with a large dose of common sense, something sorely lacking in our politicians.

The auto companies need to restructure. If they can accomplish that outside bankruptcy court, that’s great, but if they can’t then so be it. That’s what bankruptcy court is for. The taxpayer should not have to pay for the failure of the auto industry management and the unions to face up to the reality of the marketplace. And Americans know it.