“Kids should be able to ride safely. I know from my own experience, you don’t need a pickup truck to drive a child to school or to go out for an ice cream cone. This is reasonable regulation. Pickup trucks need a single seat, maybe two – no more. I don’t aim to prohibit Ford F Series trucks altogether. I realize farmers, ranchers and contractors have legitimate uses for these machines. But it’s time to put an end to urban cowboys, socialite soccer moms, Republicans from Massachusetts and would be gentleman farmers recklessly endangering the public with big, powerful, multi-passenger pickup trucks. Leave powerful pickups to us. “
“General Motors and Chrysler Corporation are model corporate citizens entering their fifth year of unquestionably yielding to urgent public policy imperatives. It’s time Allen Mullaly and his crew over at Ford Motor Corporation gets on board. The truck control crisis creates an opportunity to infuse much needed balance into the auto industry.”
Tester signaled the legislation will exempt landholders owning or leasing ten or more acres, farmers or ranchers who drive 100 hp or larger tractors, contractors who operate a backhoe, bulldozer or front end loader, and entities at all levels of government. To limit impulsive purchases, there will be a two week cooling off period when pickup trucks cannot be purchased before Christmas. Acknowledging the importance of forestry interests to the Montana state economy, Tester has asked the lumber industry for input on what legitimate interests might be served by allowing it to continue to use pickup trucks. Some truck control activists, who refused to be identified by name because of the sensitivity of the matter, acknowledge they would be open to limiting restrictions to trucks equipped with automatic transmissions, which are known to permit poorly trained drivers to gun the engines and accelerate rapidly.
Senator Tester’s legislation closes the notorious Penny Saver loophole. Non-dealer pickup owners would no longer be able to advertise trucks for sale in unregulated markets. Owners may, however, turn pickup trucks in to local police departments or other designated law enforcement agencies without fear of prosecution. The law expands the duties of and renames the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, as the Bureau of Stuff That Uppity Progressives Insist Desist (STUPID). After opportunities for public input, STUPID will publish the rules and regulations it has already written defining what Ford F-Series pickup trucks are covered by the legislation.
A coalition of vehicle manufacturers including Subaru USA, Volkswagen USA, BMW USA, Mercedes USA and Hyundai USA, has come out in favor of the Tester bill. To build support for the legislation, they launched the website www.wedontbuildpickuptrucks.com.
Jon Tester is serving his second six-year term in the United States Senate. He was returned to his senate seat with a resounding plurality when the opposition vote split last November between Republican candidate Denny Rehberg and Libertarian candidate Dan Cox. During the campaign Senator Tester said he is no Barack Obama puppet. He will support truck control legislation so long as President Obama opposes it.