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House defeats 'primary' seat belt bill

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The House has defeated a measure that would make North Dakota’s buckle-up law primary.

That means you could be pulled over for not wearing your safety belt.

The law is currently “secondary,” meaning you have to be stopped for another offense.

The House Transportation Committee voted 8 to 5 for a “do not pass.”

Rep. Robert Paulson (R-Minot) said seat belt use is up, even without a "primary enforcement" measure.

"As Ronald Reagan once said, 'Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits, is in deciding to protect us from ourselves,'" Paulson said.

Rep. Jared Hagert (R-Emerado) urged that the measure be passed. He told the House he liked the part of the bill that requires everyone in the car to be buckled up.

"It makes a lot of sense to have everybody buckled up in that vehicle," Hagert said.

The bill – SB 2121 – failed on a 49 to 45 vote.

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