The Return of a 55 mph Speed Limit?

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Senator John Warner of Virginia has asked the Energy Department to look into setting a national speed limit that would best optimize the nation’s gasoline use. A 55 mph limit could save 167,000 barrels of oil each day.

In 1974, Congress mandated a 55 mph speed limit in part to combat the Arab oil embargo, so there is precedent for this kind of regulation.

But is it a good idea?

Are we at a point where we need to force Americans to conserve gas use?