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Who Wants to Own Two or Three Cars?

If Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has his way with the reauthorization bill, not everyone will need to.

Q. How do you get your daily exercise, then?

A. I get up early, and I go to the House gym—as a former member of Congress I still have access—and get on the treadmill for about 45 minutes. I started jogging in 1980, and I’ve run two marathons. And I started biking because I could not get my wife to exercise, but she likes biking. We bought comfort bikes when we were in Peoria, and now here in D.C. we go out on the C&O Canal trail along the Potomac River, and all we see are families and kids and people walking.

Q. Do you still have a car?

A. I have a Hybrid Ford Escape in Peoria, and I have a 1998 Buick here in Washington.

Q. Wow, what kind of gas mileage does that Buick get?

A. Not very good, about 19 miles per gallon. It’s a gas guzzler but didn’t qualify for the clunker program. But we live in the Foggy Bottom area of D.C. and walk just about everywhere on the weekend.

Q. It sounds like you seek out livable communities in your personal life.

A. The idea of livable communities is not Ray LaHood’s idea or Barack Obama’s idea: It’s the people’s. This is what the people want right now.

Christie Findlay is deputy editor of Capitol File magazine and former editor in chief of Politics magazine.

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