Vol. 10, No. 1  August 1998

Find out where candidates for Congress STAND on alcohol policies

To view the survey, click here.

The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) launched a $2 billion five-year, youth-oriented anti-drug media campaign this summer. The highly publicized effort makes almost no mention of America’s — and youths’ — most abused and dangerous drug: alcohol. Each year alcohol causes more than 107,000 deaths. The economic cost totaled more than $166 billion in 1995. Alcohol kills more young people than all illicit drugs combined, and early use is associated with an increased risk of later alcohol — and other drug — problems.

Alcohol producers spend some $2 billion per year on advertising and promotions to increase sales. As of July, the alcohol industry had contributed more than $1 million in campaign contributions to influence Members of Congress in the fall election. Since 1987, alcohol and related interests have contributed over $26 million to federal candidates and political parties. The large amount of money spent on advertising and campaign contributions makes it increasingly important for citizens to find out if candidates for the U.S. Congress are concerned about the enormous social and economic costs to society caused by alcohol, and whether they support policies to reduce that harm.

1998 is an election year. All 435 Members of the House of Representatives and one third of the Senate are up for election. Those officials and their challengers will be asking for support in your community. The next two months will provide numerous opportunities to find out where the candidates stand on alcohol policy issues.

Why do the survey?

The Center for Science in the Public Interest has developed an easy-to-use survey that local groups can use (or adapt) to question Congressional candidates about their alcohol policy positions. The answers will help inform citizens in your community about issues that touch their lives on a day-to-day basis. Asking your Congressional candidates about alcohol policy issues not only informs voters about the issues, but can increase the visibility of alcohol policy issues, and inject alcohol policy into the election debate.

How can your community/organization use the survey questions?

What can you do with the survey responses?

To view the survey, click here.

For more information, contact Center for Science in the Public Interest
(202) 332-9110 x385 or <alcproject@cspinet.org>.

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