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                       Office of the Press Secretary
                             (Chobe, Botswana)
For Immediate Release                                     March 30, 1998

Statement by the President

Although my trip to Africa precludes me from joining Congresswoman Nita Lowey, Congressman Charles Canady and others gathered in the Roosevelt Room, I want to state once more my strong support for legislation to put the brakes on drunk driving.

Setting a uniform limit for impaired driving at .08 blood alcohol content (BAC) will help us crack down on drunk driving nationwide. At a time when crime all across America is going down, we still lose an American to drunk driving every 30 minutes -- every half hour a family is shattered, a child, a parent, a neighbor, is lost forever.

By establishing a strong but sensible limit on blood alcohol content, we could save as many as 600 lives a year. And a uniform drunk driving standard would still allow adults to drink responsibly and moderately -- since the .08 BAC standard is not reached until a 170-pound man has had more than four drinks in an hour, and three for a typical woman.

This should not be a partisan issue. Indeed, the bipartisan work of Congresswoman Lowey and Congressman Canady and Senators Lautenberg and DeWine, proves that when leaders from both parties come together, we can set aside political differences to save lives and serve America. It is my fervent hope that the majority of the House will join the large bipartisan majority in the Senate, and send me legislation that will make our streets safe, our drivers sober, and our laws more sensible.