Senate Blocks McCain Bid To Raise Auto-Safety Law
                    October 9, 2000

                    By a WALL STREET JOURNAL Staff Reporter

                    WASHINGTON -- The Senate continued to block Sen. John McCain (R.,
                    Ariz.) from bringing up auto-safety legislation prompted by the
                    Firestone tire recall.

                                         The Senate Commerce Committee, chaired by
                                         Mr. McCain, unanimously approved a bill that
                                         would require the auto industry to report more
                                         information on potential safety problems and
                                         would impose jail sentences on executives who
                    knowingly approve the sale of defective products that result in death or
                    injury. But several senators exercised their right under the chamber's
                    rules to block a floor vote.

                    The House is working on its version of the legislation. A vote in the full
                    House is expected early next week. If senators don't remove their
                    holds, the Senate won't get a chance to take up any version of the bill.

                    Mr. McCain chastised opponents for not identifying themselves and
                    accused them of caving into auto-industry lobbyists. Auto groups say
                    Mr. McCain's bill is "defective legislation" that would criminalize legitimate
                    engineering-design decisions. They support a provision of the House bill
                    that would allow company officials to avoid criminal prosecution if they
                    correct any misleading reports to the government "within a reasonable
                    time," but Mr. McCain calls that "a loophole."