Republicans in the White House: Limiting infrastructure spending to roads and bridges
As the Biden administration considers the ‘payback’ portion of its Build Back Better plan as the $ 1.9 billion COVID-19 relief bill is considered in the Senate, Republicans draw one line from the other side of the road when it comes to infrastructure investment. After a White House meeting Thursday that included President Joe Biden and Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, Representative Sam Graves, R-Missouri, the leading member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, a said he had made it clear that for an infrastructure bill to happen, Republican priorities had to be taken into account. “It can’t be a ‘my way or on the freeway’ approach like the last Congress,” Graves said. “First and foremost, a freeway bill cannot become a multi-billion dollar catch-all bill, or it will lose Republican support. We must be responsible, and a bill that is not cost compensated will lose Republican support. Second, a transportation bill should be a transportation bill that primarily focuses on basic transportation needs, such as roads and bridges. Republicans will not support another Green New Deal disguised as a freight bill. Graves’ wake-up call comes a day after the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) gave the country’s infrastructure a C- rating and said it would take $ 2 trillion over 10 years to Speaking on the ASCE assessment on Wednesday – and contradicting Graves’ warning – Buttigieg stressed that infrastructure “is more than roads and bridges, power grids and ports. It’s about investing in ways that create millions of good, lasting jobs. These are choices to fight. climate change, and it’s about building our infrastructure in a way that makes our country a more equitable place for everyone. Also in conflict with Graves, the investment figures deployed by Biden during his 2020 election campaign, which included not only $ 1.3 trillion over 10 years for infrastructure, but an ‘accelerated investment’ of $ 2 trillion. dollars during his first term that included a low-carbon transport strategy to meet his climate change goals. Buttigieg said on Wednesday that infrastructure was one of the most bipartisan things the administration had “It’s not just a red state versus blue state or rural versus urban issue, it’s a national issue, and the rewards are huge – maybe a unique time to invest,” he said. he said. “Interest rates are at historically low levels, unemployment is higher than it should be, and there has never been a better reason for politicians, regardless of their party. or their ideology, of want to make it happen. “But Graves claimed on Thursday that rural infrastructure needs had been left behind in the COVID relief plan, citing the $ 30 billion in transit funding included by Democrats and mainly benefiting areas urban. “Republicans are eager to work on bipartisan solutions, but it will take a willingness to compromise and a good faith effort to consider Republican priorities,” he said. “We all have the same goal of improving America’s transportation infrastructure, but we cannot ignore large swathes of the country in the process.” Related Articles: Infrastructure Upgrade: US Shifts From D + to C- Biden’s Plan to Boost Last Mile Road Safety Joe Biden Wants to Launch Low Carbon Transportation Strategy Click for more articles on FreightWaves by John Gallagher. See More BenzingaClick Here for Benzinga Options TransactionsWorkhorse Lawyers Up In Mail Truck Contract Dispute with Postal ServiceDaily Infographic: Has Amazon Spoiled Whole Foods? © 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.