Monday, September 06, 2010

Infrastructure spending

The news has been full of stories all week about how the Democrats and Obama wouldn't be asking for any additional spending for job creation, and would be going for tax cuts only, but today, I assume based on advance copies of his remarks, Obama is going for infrastructure spending after all.
President Obama on Monday is to call for as much as $50 billion in government spending to start up a long-term public works plan emphasizing transportation projects – roads, rail and airport runways – over the next six years.
Of course, asking for it and getting it are two different things.
Mr. Obama will lay out the plan, which is intended to promote the creation of construction jobs over the coming year and beyond, during a trip to Milwaukee on Monday afternoon, where he will observe Labor Day by attending a union festival. It would require Congressional approval, as it envisions extending and revising a broad transportation policy bill that is usually renewed every five years or so, but has been stalled in Congress.
It's not likely the Congress will suddenly become a model of efficiency and common sense and will start passing bills before November. Still it's a fight worth having and if they play the optics right for a change, it will really highlight how the GOP/Blue Dog obstructionisim is hurting the recovery. So there's that.

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