When former President Donald Trump came to office, he shocked Democrats by promising to pass a much needed infrastructure bill.
Unsure of how to react, then-Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) started to cozy up to the idea, particularly as Trump was courting unions which would benefit from the new jobs created by the bill he was promoting. But then Democrats quietly maneuvered to stab Trump in the back.
Terrified that Trump and Republicans would be identified with infrastructure spending, a region of politics which Democrats see as their own turf since the era of the New Deal, they plotted to sabotage the President’s efforts. It wouldn’t do to have a red president supporting the middle class, because Democrats survive on correlating the well-being of the middle class with federal spending, and they equate federal spending with Democrat officials. If they lose their territory, they might lose elections, and so they schemed against Trump.
Trump’s well-planned infrastructure package contained several other snags for progressives, it ran afoot of environmental issues near and dear to leftist sentiments, and even worse, promoted *gasp* capitalist investment from the private sector.
Trump’s proposal would have slashed needless red tape that stood in the way of infrastructure projects and massively reduced the need of the federal government to shell out the full bill.
In total, Trump proposed an infrastructure plan worth $1.5 trillion in 2018, and only $200 billion of that spending would come out of taxpayers’ pockets. The concept was already proven for issues such as broadband internet, where the private sector was outperforming the government’s ‘net neutrality’ method to expanding the grid.
At the time, Republicans were in control of both the House and the Senate, meaning that in theory, the passage of Trump’s infrastructure plan was guaranteed. But Washington’s worst-kept secret is that corrupt Republican officials are just as addicted to federal spending as the Democrats are. Senate Republicans were unwilling to accept a spending model that left the funds outside of their direct control. Then, the Republicans lost the House, and with it, a golden opportunity.
Now, a mere three years later, Republicans are preparing to accept terms dictated by the Democrats, a bill that doesn’t include a border wall, a bill that doesn’t involve the Keystone XL pipeline, and a bill which grants a mere $110 billion to bridges and roads, totaling less than 10% of the now $1.2 trillion compromise package which saddles taxpayers with the full bill.
Republican voters are unlikely to feel very impressed.
Author: Kathryn Parker