Appearance Alert!
MRC Research Director Rich Noyes on Fox Business Network at 5:55 p.m. ET

'American Morning' Anchor Contradicts Himself on Clunkers

Since when can something work and not work at the same time?

According to “American Morning” co-host John Roberts, that’s what has happened with the government auto rebate program Cash for Clunkers that ends Aug. 24.

Since when can something work and not work at the same time?

According to “American Morning” co-host John Roberts, that’s what has happened with the government auto rebate program Cash for Clunkers that ends Aug. 24.

“It really is a good news bad news situation isn’t it. The good news is this works unlike most government programs, but like most government programs it also doesn’t work,” Roberts said on CNN Aug. 21.

Roberts confusing comment followed Kiran Chetry’s interview with car dealership president Geoff Pohanka who called the program “wildly successful” for selling cars and said “we like the program” also said it was a “bureaucratic nightmare from the beginning” for dealers.

Part of that “nightmare” included 18 pages of law and 160 pages of regulations for the program. Pohanka also told CNN that out of 800 cars sold by his dealership under the program, only 10 claims had been paid by the government. That’s slightly more than 1 percent.

“We were promised to be paid within 10 days under this program and so far most of our claims have not even been looked at,” Pohanka said.

Slow reimbursements were a major complaint according to a National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) survey which found 97 percent of dealers saying the government wasn’t repaying them fast enough. Thirteen percent of dealers dropped out of the program because of payment concerns.

Despite that, the program has been immensely popular with the national news media. ABC, CBS and NBC all called the trade-in scheme a “victim of its own success,” after the program bankrupted itself in the first week. It was supposed to last for 14 weeks.