Politics & Government

New rules may force some in Congress to give up their cars

U.S. Rep. Joe Barton of Texas is proud to drive a 2007 flex-fuel Chevy Tahoe made at the GM plant in his district. But he may have to trade it in for a smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicle because of a little-noticed provision in last year's energy bill. That measure requires House members who lease vehicles through their office to make sure that they are energy-efficient and eco-friendly.

"For not being a hybrid, this is as good as it gets," Barton, R-Arlington, said of the truck, which uses various fuel blends and gets 21 mpg on the highway. But it may not be good enough. Barton won't know until later in the year, after environmental officials release a list of approved vehicles that emit low levels of greenhouse gases.

Barton is far from the only lawmaker affected. Rep. Elton Gallegly R-Calif., may have to give up his Ford Expedition; Rep. John Peterson, R-Pa., may have to give up his flex-fuel Chevy Tahoe.

Read the full story at Star-telegram.com.