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GM could escape bankruptcy, CEO says

WASHINGTON, April 5 (UPI) -- General Motors Corp. could escape bankruptcy, but will use its protections if necessary, its new chief executive said Sunday.

Fritz Henderson, who became GM's chief executive a week ago, said on NBC's "Meet the Press" program that he intends to move quickly on demands by the White House to make cost cuts.

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"We are planning to get the job done. Our preference would be to do it outside of the bankruptcy process," Henderson said. "If it cannot be done outside a bankruptcy process, it will be done within it."

Henderson noted he will be pleased when the struggling auto maker is able to repay the federal loans that have kept the company afloat.

"We need to respect the fact that we need to look after the taxpayer, we need to justify to the consumer and the taxpayer that we're going to succeed going forward," he said. "And one of the happiest days of my future career is going to be the day we pay the loans back."

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