A New Direction: Secretary LaHood on the Dangers Ahead for the GOP

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Secretary Ray Lahood at a White House briefing.
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For a British magazine, The Economist uses a very American method to measure costs over time: the Big Mac Index, first developed in 1986. 

The Index uses the price of the McDonald's staple to calculate inflation by country, by year. In 1993, Americans paid $2.28 for a Big Mac. In 2015, the same sandwich costs Americans $4.79, a 110 percent increase in the last 22 years.

But not all prices have gone up in the last two decades: 1993 was the last time Congress raised the gas tax, to 18 cents a gallon. As former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood tells The Takeaway, that's a problem for the nation's crumbling transportation infrastructure.

Before his time in President Obama's cabinet, LaHood served 14 years as a Republican congressman from Illinois. His new memoir, "Seeking Bipartisanship: My Life in Politics," reflects on years in politics, and celebrates bipartisanship, a trait he finds to be woefully lacking in Congress today. 

What you'll learn from this segment:

  • Why a Republican like Ray LaHood was drafted into the Obama Administraiton.
  • What role transportation has played in America's economic recovery in the last few years.
  • How he views the current political climate in Washington, D.C.