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GM CEO Fired

General Motors Chief Executive Rick Wagoner will step down as CEO of GM, part of the federal government’s plan to bail out the struggling company, CNN reported Sunday.

Wagoner’s resignation is believed to be due to increased pressure by the Obama administration for an internal restructuring by GM. The administration has blamed mismanagement over the years for some of the automaker’s financial problems.

GM has not yet confirmed the decision, however a White House official told Reuters that it was done at the request of the administration, Reuters reports.

There has been no indication who will replace Wagoner, however many speculate Fitz Henderson, GM’s chief operating officer and No.2 executive, is widely considered the leading internal candidate.

The move comes two days before the appointed deadline for GM and its smaller competitor, Chrysler, to prove to the Treasury Department that they can be viable in the long term. If the Treasury does not find the companies viable, the government can recall the $17.4 billion it has already loaned the two companies.

Wagoner was a 32-year company veteran and had been CEO since 2000. Prior to becoming CEO, he was chief operating officer and led GM’s North America Branch.