In a presidential campaign turning largely on stagnant incomes and national security, Lincoln Chafee announced his bid for the White House last week with an unusual policy stance: He called for adoption of the metric system.
Mr. Chafee, a former Republican and independent who is seeking the Democratic nomination, cast the proposal as a step toward global comity. “Here’s a bold embrace of internationalism: let’s join the rest of the world and go metric,” Mr. Chafee said at his campaign kickoff in Virginia.
The policy raised questions about what American traditions might have to change—football fields might be 91.44 meters, rather than 100 yards, and the distance from home plate to first base measured as 27.432 meters, rather than 90 feet.
Mr. Chafee, a former Rhode Island governor and senator, said that the U.S.’s insistence on using inches, feet, quarts and gallons set the country apart from the global community. He described the process of converting to metric as “easy.”
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