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Friday, November 28, 2008

A Public Works New Deal Needed

America's transportation infrastructure is crumbling. Bridges much like the one in Minnesota that collapsed in 2007 teeter on the edge of failure. Roads are more and more congested and Mass Transit isn't working the way it should.

Barack Obama has an opportunity when he takes office. He can make rebuilding America's crumbling infrastructure a priority and also put millions of Americans to work on repairing bridges, building roads and other public works projects. President Clinton had a similar idea but it was sidetracked by Democratic Congressional Appropriators who were not going to be bossed around by someone who had barely received 43% of the national popular vote in a moderate turnout election. Now Obama having received close to 53% in a huge turnout election has the onus and less entrenched appropriators to deal with to try and push this agenda.

Under the GOP, widening and rebuilding interstate highways between cities that ran through rural areas were often a priority. Pushing funding for new interstates in the South was also a priority. (intrestingly though Florida, a key swing state has gotten less federalhighway money per capita than any other southern state as it did under the Democrats leaving the state and local governments to build and manage highways with little or no federal help.) Under the Democrats repairing urban roads and pushing urban mass transit must be a priority.

I'll have some specific proposals for highway and bridge funding as we approach the swearing in of the new congress in January.

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I am the host of the Major League Soccer Talk and EPL Talk Podcasts and am frequent guest on other (world) football shows. I am also the publisher of various other websites including this one. I work in public/government relations in addition to my soccer work and have a keen interest in history, politics, aviation, travel,and the world around us.