Peabody award–winning journalist Andrea Bernstein is Senior Editor for Politics & Policy for WNYC News. She has previously served as Metro Editor, Political Director, Director of Transportation Nation, and Senior Reporter.
President's Budget: High Speed Rail, Fixing Roads & Bridges, Complete Streets, TIGER Grants
Monday, February 13, 2012 - 01:12 PM
Ok, let's remember that this is not a budget -- or that it's not a budget, only. It's a political document, in a campaign year, that is designed to press forward President Obama's case that he is on the side hard-working Americans, not the 1 %
Having said that, the transportation portion (pdf) is remarkable in its consistency -- you'd never know the drubbing President Obama took last year on high speed rail and the jobs act.
*Like last year, the President wants a half-trillion dollar, six-year transportation bill. (It's broken out slightly differently, but with $476 for a transportation bill and $50 billion in immediate investments -- a.k.a the jobs bill -- its almost the same as last years $550 billion proposal.)
*Like last year, the President wants to spend about $50 billion on high speed rail, despite a drubbing in Congress in 2011.
*There's no backing down on TIGER grants and "streets that accommodate pedestrian, bicycle, and transit access."
More soon, after Transpo Secretary Ray LaHood's conference call.