UPDATE: Governors ask Congress to go easy on Toyota

By The Associated Press

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Four governors of states with Toyota plants are calling on Congress to be fair to the automaker in hearings concerning safety recalls.

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour and Alabama Gov. Bob Riley asked in a letter Wednesday that Toyota get “a responsible and fair response from the federal government.”

In particular, the governors called for hearings that are “not tainted by the federal government’s financial interest in some of Toyota’s competitors.”

Beshear said Toyota employs more than 172,000 Americans in plants and dealerships across the nation. In the letter, the governors said Toyota’s continued success is in the national interest.