Last night came the shaky, breathless news that Cash for Clunkers (C4C), the federal program to get older, more polluting cars off the roads by giving consumers between $3,500 and $4,500 rebates for their trade ins, had run out of money and was being shut down. Not so fast says the Detroit Free Press. C4C will live through the end of July. Which is... today.

Seems as if Michigan senator Carl Levin was assured by Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (seen above at the program's kick off last Monday) that the suddenly befuddled, successful and possibly broke program will survive through Friday. After today? "Depends on whether the administration can find some money."

The Detroit News is reporting that money is on its way in the form of $2 billion siphoned from an energy loan guarantee program since Cash for Clunkers is a more urgent priority. The House of Representatives introduced H.R. 3435 today, which will like move through Congress at a rapid pace, though no one knows what will happen if more money isn't approved by midnight tonight.

UPDATE: H.R. 3435 just passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 316 to 109. This means the Cash for Clunkers bill is halfway to getting an influx of $2 billion, pending a vote by the Senate next week. Despite the delay, we're hearing reports that the program will not be suspended in the interim and that people can expect the rebates to be available while car shopping this weekend.

[Source: Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News | Photo by Win McNamee/Getty]

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