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$2 billion cash for clunkers deal imminent

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Filed: Country: Philippines
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WASHINGTON (CNN) – With the Senate poised to pass a bill Thursday night expanding the "cash for clunkers" program with an infusion of $2 billion, White House aides say President Obama will quickly sign the bill into law by the end of the week so there's no interruption to the popular incentive this weekend.

"He's going to want to make sure the funds are in place by this weekend," one senior White House official noted because of the particularly brisk weekend business the program has sparked.

There has been concern the program is so popular it will run out of its initial $1 billion in funding if the Senate leaves for recess this week without completing a deal. Several top Republicans, including Sen. John McCain of Arizona, raised concerns about pouring more money into the program at a time when the government is deep in debt.

But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada and other top Democrats have been lining up votes for the expansion by making the case that the program is providing a boost to the economy by increasing weak auto sales, while also helping the environment by getting "clunkers" off the road in favor of more fuel-efficient vehicles.

Several Democratic officials told CNN the hurdles have been cleared in order to allow the Senate to pass the bill with new money, which was passed by the House last week, on Thursday night. Reid is expected to bring it up for a vote around 7 pm or 8 pm ET, according to the officials, and then it is expected to be quickly sent to Obama's desk for his signature by the end of the week

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2009/...-deal-imminent/

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Filed: Timeline

Done Deal: Senate Passes $2 Billion Cash for Clunkers Lifeline

8/6/09 8:12 PM EDT

With the enormously popular cash for clunkers program soon to exhaust its $1 billion allotment, the Senate on Thursday passed legislation providing an additional $2 billion, which the lawmakers hope will see the program through the month.

The vote – 60 to 37 — came less than a week after the House approved the same proposal. Senate passage of an identical bill means that drivers can continue receiving between $3,500 and $4,500 to trash their gas guzzlers in favor of vehicles that get better mileage.

Seven amendments to the House proposal were offered on the Senate floor Thursday afternoon, with Democratic leaders, behind Michigan’s influential delegation, successfully urging lawmakers to oppose each proposal, one by one. If any of the amendments had passed, then the entire bill would have required re-approval by House lawmakers, who left Washington last week for August recess. The delay would have left car dealers uncertain when (or if) the funding would arrive, likely stalling the cash for clunkers program altogether.

The impetus for Senate lawmakers to pass the House bill was clear: Though the environmental benefits of the program are slight, the initiative has been a boon to auto dealers and consumers alike. Few lawmakers wanted to return home for the August break to face an angry constituency.

Looking ahead, there are still questions about what would happen if the $2 billion runs out while Congress is on recess. And there remain concerns about how and when that money — which was siphoned from a loan program encouraging the development of green technologies — might be replaced.

But for now, most lawmakers are just breathing sighs of relief that the bill is passed, and vacation has arrived.

President Obama has promised to sign the bill into law as soon as it hits his desk.

http://washingtonindependent.com/54187/don...unkers-lifeline

Edited by Mister_Bill
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Filed: Country: Philippines
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I'm glad to see policy like this that encourages fuel efficiency rather than Bush's huge tax giveaway he gave out for people to buy SUV's....which BTW, didn't outrage any of the teabaggers back then. Funny how outrage works for some people.

Edited by Col. 'Bat' Guano
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My fiance has a 15 year old car, maybe he can trade it in for the money to help pay for our immigration funds... since he has a motorcycle too :lol:

But it's good to see this, it'll help with the whole "global warming" thing, I'm sure.

Edited by Rhiann

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