Mokhiber: Ari, I've got two questions for you.
There appears to be a grassroots movement, led by Republicans
nationwide, to keep big rig interstate trucks -- to keep them on the
Interstate highways and to ban them from small two-lane, two-lane roads.
For example, Christine Whitman, when she was Governor of New Jersey,
implemented this policy in parts of New Jersey.
Senator Warner got behind an effort to ban these big trucks from a
small road in Virginia just last week, Rt. 17. It's happening in the
eastern panhandle of West Virginia.
Does the President favor this kind of limitation on interstate trucks
to the interstate highway systems?
Ari Fleischer: Russell, that's a matter the Department of
Transportation will be working on it. I don't think that's something the
President himself would get involved in.
Mokhiber: Okay, second question I have for you. There is a broad
coalition of political leaders ranging from former CIA Director James
Woolsey to consumer advocate Ralph Nader, that is pushing for the
legalization of industrial hemp.
This is a non-drug crop that was grown by Thomas Jefferson and George
Washington. It has a wide range of uses -- clothing, fuel, among others.
Farmers around world are growing -- in China and Canada -- and
importing it. It is illegal here in the United States for farmers to
Does the President favor the legalization of industrial hemp?
Fleischer: I'm not aware of any statement that the President has made
that would lend one to reach that conclusion.
Mokhiber: Could you look into it for me?
Fleischer: Industrial hemp?
Fleischer: Well, I will advise you if anything changes from what I just