Senators want evaluation of 'cash for clunkers' before vote

Two senators wrote Transportion Secretary Ray LaHood asking for an evaluation of the the "cash for clunkers" program before the Senate takes up a vote to extend the program's funding this week.

Sens. Dianne FeinsteinDianne FeinsteinOvernight Tech: Pressure builds ahead of TV box vote | Intel Dems warn about Russian election hacks | Spending bill doesn't include internet measure Intel Dems: Russia making 'serious effort' to influence US election GOP senators: Obama rebuffed negotiations on 9/11 bill MORE (D-Calif.) and Susan CollinsSusan CollinsSwing-state Republicans play up efforts for gun control laws Reid knocks GOP on gun 'terror loophole' after attacks GOP pressures Kerry on Russia's use of Iranian airbase MORE (R-Maine), two principal authors of the initial bill, asked LaHood for key statistics on the number of cars purchased under the program, and the extent of the environmental impact expected to be gained by the program.

"We believe that Congress needs this information immediately in order to evaluate the program's effectiveness in attaining its two goals of stimulating automobile sales and reducing oil consumption," the senators wrote. "Without strong data on the effectiveness of the program, it will be more difficult for Congress to evaluate and improve the current program."

The extension of the program may face a bit more of an uphill climb in the Senate compared to the House, which easily passed the fast-tracked bill. Sen. John McCainJohn McCainSenate rivals gear up for debates McCain opponent releases new ad hitting his record Why is the election so close? Experts say it's all in your head MORE (R-Ariz.), for instance, pledged to filibuster an extension.

(Hat tip: SenateUS)