An initial $1 billion was used up after just 10 days when an eager public bought into the program that offers up to $4,500 in federal subsidies for trading in an old gas guzzlers for new, fuel efficient vehicles.
The Senate approved the extension Thursday on a 60-37 vote just before breaking for recess. Last week, the House voted to keep the program chugging along.
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"Cash for clunkers has been a proven success," Obama said in a written statement issued shortly after the vote. "The initial transactions are generating a more than 50% increase in fuel economy; they are generating $700 to $1000 in annual savings for consumers in reduced gas costs alone, and they are getting the oldest, dirtiest and most air polluting trucks and SUVs off the road for good."