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Washington — Longtime motorcycle riders Sens. Gary Peters of Michigan and Jodi Ernst of Iowa have created the first Senate Motorcycle Caucus, which they will co-chair.

The lawmakers, who announced the caucus Tuesday, said it would advocate for issues on behalf of both motorcycle riders and manufacturers.

Last summer, Peters rode 833 miles through 26 Michigan counties during a five-day motorcycle tour, stopping at small businesses as he cruised east to west across the state. He is planning another motorcycle tour of Michigan this summer, according to his office.

“To this day, I believe there is no better way to see Michigan’s beautiful scenery than by bike,” Peters said in a statement.

“Motorcyclists come from all walks of life, and I can’t think of a better way to bring together a diverse and dedicated group of advocates to discuss everything from safety concerns to manufacturing. I’m looking forward to working with Senator Ernst as co-chair of the bipartisan Senate Motorcycle Caucus to foster these important discussions and find common ground with motorcycle lovers across the country.”

The Bloomfield Township Democrat started a newspaper route to buy his first motorcycle at age 11. He now owns a Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide and an 1100GS BMW.

Ernst, a Republican, also grew up with motorcycles. She holds an annual Roast and Ride political fundraiser in Des Moines that leaves from a Harley-Davidson dealer.

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to encourage thoughtful discussion and solutions on behalf of motorcycle riders and manufacturers through my new role as co-chair of the Motorcycle Caucus,” Ernst said in a statement.

“Throughout my 99-county tour of Iowa, I have heard from many of these folks about some of their priorities, including improving safety, infrastructure, and energy efficiency. These concerns are shared by folks across our great state and country, and I look forward to working with Senator Peters toward solutions.”

mburke@detroitnews.com

(202) 662-8736

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