Why Is MADD Pushing Ignition Interlock Devices?

Posted by Lawrence Taylor on August 20th, 2008

As has been widely reported in the nation’s media, Mothers Against Drunk Driving has been aggressively pushing state and federal legislators to require ignition interlock devices (IIDs) to be installed in vehicles.  MADD’s President has even publicly stated that IIDs will “eliminate drunk driving once and for all”. 

Of course, automobile manufacturers have jumped enthusiastically on this.  Nissan, Saab, Volvo, Chrysler and Toyota have already designed IIDs — both as optional equipment and as possible standard equipment for all of their models.  See All U.S. Cars to Have Ignition Interlock Devices? and New MADD Goal: All Cars Equipped with Breathlayzers.

So why is MADD so enthusiastically pushing for the adoption of these unreliable, dangerous and expensive gizmos?  

Take a look at MADD’s 2005 Annual Report.   On their list of “Corporate Donors”, six corporations are listed as “Platinum Corporate Donors” — that is, donors of $100,000 or more.  The first is a telemarketing company, DialAmerica Marketing.  Of the remaining five, three are carmakers planning IIDs in their models:  Nissan North America, Daimler Chrysler Corporation  and General Motors Companies (makers of Saab).  See The Truth About Ignition Interlock Devices.

Follow the money.

  • koivisto

    Why stop at IID’s? Lets put in drug detection equipment, reaction testing, eyesight detection, emotional detection, IQ limits, insurance detection, age detection, outstanding warrant detection, mechanical sensors for vehicle equipment, legal status detection. In for a penny in for a pound.

  • joe

    This is a terrible case of commerce jumping on a legal bandwagon. Theives are allowed to walk into malls after serving time or paying crimes, alcoholics can enter bars, but accused drunk drivers can’t drive? This makes no sense and is in now way Constitutional.