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Encyclopedia > National Minimum Drinking Age Act

The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 (Title 23 U.S.C. ยง158) was passed on July 17, 1984 by the United States Congress as a mechanism whereby all states would become thereafter required to legislate and enforce the age of 21 years as a minimum age for purchasing or public possession of alcoholic beverages. Under the Federal Aid Highway Act, a state not enforcing the minimum age would be subjected to a ten percent decrease in its annual federal highway apportionment. [1] is the 198th day of the year (199th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1984 Gregorian calendar). ... Type Bicameral Houses Senate House of Representatives President of the Senate President pro tempore Dick Cheney, (R) since January 20, 2001 Robert C. Byrd, (D) since January 4, 2007 Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, (D) since January 4, 2007 Members 535 plus 4 Delegates and 1 Resident Commissioner Political... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The Federal Aid Highway Act of 1973 (PL 93-87) was the renewal of the highway bill for the next five years, authorizing $18. ...

While this act did not outlaw the consumption of alcoholic beverages by those under 21 years of age, some states extended its provisions into an outright ban. However, most states still permit "underage" consumption of alcohol in some circumstances. In some states, no restriction on private consumption is made, while in others, consumption is only allowed in specific locations, in the presence of consenting and supervising family members, and/or during religious occasions.[2][3]

Pressure from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) was attributed with passage of the bill. MADD logo Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or MADD, is a single-issue non-profit victims rights organization in the United States and other countries. ...



The Conservative Party of New York opposed the passage of the law in 1984, but according to The New York Post no longer considers the effort to bring back drinking by those under 21 worthwhile. In 2001, according to the same article, New York State Assembly member Felix Ortiz introduced a bill that would lower the drinking age to 18. He cited unfairness and difficulty with enforcement as his motivations. [4] Since then, New York City nightclubs have enforced a drinking age of 18 rather than 21. The Conservative Party of New York is an American political party active only in the state of New York. ... The first edition of The New York Post of July 6, 2004 incorrectly declared that U.S. presidential candidate John Kerry would choose U.S. Representative Dick Gephardt to be his vice-presidential running mate that day (in reality, Kerry chose John Edwards). ... The chamber of the New York State Assembly. ... The New York State Assembly has 150 members elected for two-year terms. ... Felix W Ortiz is currently representing New Yorks 51st Assembly District, originally elected in November 1994. ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ...

Former congressman Scott Klug (R-WI) has unsuccessfully attempted to revoke the act and leave regulation of drinking age back to individual states.[1] Scott L. Klug (born January 16, 1953) was a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from Wisconsin. ...

In 2004, the president of Vermont's Middlebury College, John McCardell, Jr. wrote in The New York Times that "the 21-year-old drinking age is bad social policy and terrible law" that has made the college drinking problem far worse. [5] Some scholars[6] and others [7] agree. In 2007, John M. McCardell, Jr. founded the non-profit organization, Choose Responsibility [8] to promote informed public debate and support a fresh approach to the problem of reckless and excessive drinking, especially by young people. Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Middlebury College is a small, private liberal arts college located in the rural town of Middlebury, Vermont, United States. ... John M. McCardell, Jr. ... The New York Times is a daily newspaper published in New York City by Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... John M. McCardell, Jr. ...

The United States is one of the few countries in the world with such a high drinking age.[9] Other countries with similarly restrictive laws include the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Bahrain. Many people also disagree with the law for other reasons, a common one is that since the legal age to become an adult is 18, the government shouldn't control what people consume after that age. Finally, opponents of this law argue that threatening states with less highway funds for not enforcing the 21 age limit is a form of blackmail.[citation needed] For other uses, see Blackmail (disambiguation). ...

Constitutional challenge

The state government of South Dakota challenged the national drinking age and sued then-Secretary of Transportation Elizabeth Dole in the case South Dakota v. Dole. However, in the majority opinion authored by Chief Justice William Rehnquist, the national drinking age was upheld. Official language(s) English Capital Pierre Largest city Sioux Falls Area  Ranked 17th  - Total 77,163 sq mi (199,905 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 380 miles (610 km)  - % water 1. ... Elizabeth Hanford Liddy Dole (born July 29, 1936) is an American politician who served in both the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush presidential administrations, and currently serves as a United States senator representing the state of North Carolina. ... was a precident-setting legal case concerning Federalism. ... William Hubbs Rehnquist (October 1, 1924 – September 3, 2005) was an American lawyer, jurist, and a political figure, who served as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of the United States and later as the Chief Justice of the United States. ...

External Links

  • MLDA-21 - dates enacted by state - NHTSA

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA, often pronounced nit-suh) is a U.S. Government agency, part of the Department of Transportation, responsible for setting safety standards and verifying compliance by automobile manufacturers. ...


  1. ^ Licensed to Drink Ed Carson
  • ^  http://epw.senate.gov/title23.pdf Title 23 of the United States Code, Highways. (PDF file)
  • ^  http://www.youthrights.org/legana.shtml Legislative Analysis of the National Minimum Drinking Age Act
  • ^  The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984
  • ^  Lovett, Kenneth. "LET KIDS START DRINKING AT 18: BROOKLYN POL." The New York Post, May 1, 2002.



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