This is an open letter to U.S. Senator Mike Braun, U.S. Senator Todd Young, and U.S. Representative Trey Hollingsworth.
I urge you to oppose legislation that would mandate that ignition interlock devices be installed in all automobiles. This regulation is not only a restriction on liberty, it is a backdoor tax increase on the American people, which will harm the American economy.
I fully support efforts to combat drunk driving. We have enhanced penalties for drunk drivers and we have educated people about the dangers of driving while impaired. We have directed law enforcement to more strictly monitor for drunk drivers. All of those are good things, and drunk driving fatalities are down dramatically from where they were 40 years ago. .
Because I strongly dislike the taste of alcohol, I am effectively a teetotaler. I have never driven after the very rare occasions when I have drank alcohol. Therefore, I strongly object to being treated like a criminal and being forced to prove I am not impaired every single time I get behind the wheel to go to work, go to shop, or drive my children to or from school. I resent the assumption that I am guilty until proven innocent, which is the foundational assumption of such a mandate.
In the decades that I have been driving, I have become intimately familiar with how things can break, and I know even small things can be very expensive. I remember disabling the electronic locks on a previous vehicle because the cost of replacing a failing module was not worth the convenience. Even an ignition key-fab can be several hundred dollars to replace! I can very easily foresee interlock devices failing, disabling the automobiles of drivers who are stone cold sober. And we all know that repairs of interlock devices will be very expensive. Are you willing to pay for the repairs to my vehicle out of your own salary?
This is a shadow tax increase on the American people – forcing us to pay more for our vehicles with these Big Brother devices installed to appease a special interest group. Worse yet, it is a regressive tax increase on the working class, one that would undo the historic tax cuts passed a couple years ago. The economy is humming along under President Donald Trump, so why would we slow down our economy by burdening a critical industry?
This is not like an air bag or a seat belt, which benefits everyone. There is absolutely no benefit to people who never drink alcohol or people who do drink but never drive afterward. If someone has driven drunk, then put him behind bars or take his automobile away. Do not punish every single American citizen, burdening us financially and treating all of us like suspected criminals. Thank you for your time.