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Detroit contracts expose auto workers' simmering anger
WAYNE, Michigan (Reuters) - A bright red Ford Focus sits illuminated on a platform just outside the automaker's Wayne, Michigan, assembly plant, a proud symbol of the company's success in reinventing itself under Alan Mulally.

The surprisingly fierce debate over proposed, four-year contracts at Ford and its smaller rival Chrysler Group LLC over the past week has exposed a rift between lower-paid, entry-level workers and veterans and anger over CEO pay in a weak economy.

The argument over wages and benefits for 67,000 unionized auto workers comes just two years after the Obama administration intervened to save General Motors and Chrysler from liquidation. But the gratitude that many Detroit workers felt just after the bailout has given way to a frustrated sense that blue-collar workers have not shared equally in the industry's comeback.

"There is a lot of anger at Ford right now, and also a lot of anger at the union," said Brandon Gustafson, a 40-year-old assembly line worker at a Ford plant in Minnesota slated for closure just before Christmas.
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