Obama Calls For $50 Billion Transportation Stimulus

Calling it an investment plan in job growth in the transportation sector, the President in a Labor Day speech outlined a six-year plan for investment in road, rail, and airports to be paid for by eliminating tax breaks and subsidies from big oil.
September 9, 2010, 6am PDT | Irvin Dawid
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Sure to be difficult to gather the necessary congressional support as the mid-term elections approach, President Obama nevertheless made a strong case for job-producing transportation investment that would also help commuters and long-distance travelers.

"Central to the plan is the president's call for an "infrastructure bank," which would be run by the government but would pool tax dollars with private investment, the White House says.

But the notion of a government-run bank - indeed, a government-run anything - is bound to prove contentious during an election year in which voters are furious over bank bailouts and over what many perceive as Mr. Obama pursuing a big government agenda. Even before the announcement Monday, Republicans were expressing caution.

Specifically, the president wants to rebuild 150,000 miles of road, lay and maintain 4,000 miles of rail track, restore 150 miles of runways and advance a next-generation air-traffic control system."

From Streetsblog: First Impressions of Obama's Big Infrastructure Announcement: Reactions are listed from several sources, including Transportation for America, The Transport Politic and James Rowen at The Political Environment who commented, "I loved the administration's commitment to a national passenger rail system; jobs and growth for Milwaukee will be and already are the local outcomes."

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Published on Tuesday, September 7, 2010 in The New York Times - Politics
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