If you were waiting for the federal government to lay down the law on distracted driving, we've got bad news for you. New bipartisan legislation from Congress has effectively put the issue back into the hands of individual states. That means that instead of a single, nationwide ban on cell phone use while driving like most advocates were hoping for, we'll likely be stuck with the same status quo for a few more years. According to TheDetroitBureau.com, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee has voted to approve a program that would provide grant incentives for states to enact their own legislation to curb distracted driving.

Thing is, the program is funded through existing programs, making it a half-hearted effort to address a real problem. TDB sites statistics that claim 16 percent of all traffic fatalities involve distracted driving, and that in 2008, 6,000 people died as a result of not paying attention to the road. So why didn't Congress take a stand and enact legislation that would limit highway funding unless states brought in laws to stop drivers from using their cell phones behind the wheel?

The short answer appears to be that no one in D.C. is willing to do anything that might upset a large selection of voters this close to November. So do us a favor and know your limits behind the wheel. Honestly, that call or text can wait.

[Source: TheDetroitBureau.com | Image: Getty]