Terrill: Federal Government Overreach Setting Record with Proposed Talking & Texting Ban
OKLAHOMA CITY (December 15, 2011) – Federal efforts to force states to ban all forms of talking and texting while driving, regardless of circumstances, disrespects the ability of citizens to govern themselves, state Rep. Randy Terrill said today.
“The U.S. Constitution makes clear that the federal government has specifically enumerated and limited powers with all other issues relegated to state governments,” said Terrill, R-Moore. “If this talking and texting initiative stands, then is there anything out of bounds for the federal government?”
Terrill’s comments came in response to reports that the National Transportation Safety Board is attempting to coerce all states into imposing total bans on texting, emailing or chatting while driving.
“States certainly have the power to take up this issue and enforce those laws within their borders,” Terrill said. “However, the federal government’s recent efforts to bully, harass, intimidate and threaten states into taking particular actions must stop.”
According to the Associated Press, 35 states and the District of Columbia already ban texting while driving, and another nine states ban hand-held cell phone use. In addition, 30 states ban all cell phone use for beginning drivers.
“Clearly, this issue is not being ignored by state lawmakers, and it obviously is not a proper function of the federal government, so I have to ask why the current federal administration would prioritize texting bans over its actual duties, such as national security.”
It is believed the National Transportation Safety Board’s recommendations could ultimately be imposed by withholding federal road funds from states that do not comply with the federal edict.
Terrill noted the proposed talking-and-texting ban follows passage of the deeply unpopular federal health care law, which independent studies have shown will increase consumer costs and reduce access to quality health care.
“In my adult lifetime, I have never seen the federal government overreach to the extent we are seeing today,” Terrill said. “From the passage of ObamaCare, to the federal government suing states that enforce federal immigration laws within their borders, to this national talking and texting ban, it seems there’s no area of our lives that the federal government is not trying to control – all at the expense of our personal freedom and liberty as well as states’ rights.”