Infrastructure Plan

If you thought Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure plan was too big, Democrats say, “hold my beer”

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If you thought Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure plan was too big, Democrats say, "hold my beer"

In recent months I’ve held my tongue regard­ing Pres­i­dent Trump’s upcom­ing pro­posal for a $1 tril­lion infra­struc­ture plan. While it goes against my firm beliefs in rein­ing in the fed­eral gov­ern­ment and reduc­ing bud­gets rather than increas­ing them, it’s pre­ma­ture to oppose it whole­heart­edly. After all, his promise to make pri­vate invest­ments the bulk of the fund­ing may not turn out to be another “Mex­ico is going to pay for it” moment.

The Democ­rats aren’t wait­ing before con­demn­ing the ini­tia­tive. They decided to dou­ble it with no pre­tense of shift­ing bur­den away from tax­pay­ers. Their plan calls for $200 bil­lion per year for a decade fully funded by the public.

Few would argue the infra­struc­ture doesn’t need improve­ment and inter­state travel falls squarely in line with the fed­eral man­date which is why I’ve held my oppo­si­tion to Trump’s pro­posal until we see it. With that said, I don’t need to see a sin­gle detail of the Democ­rats’ pro­posal beyond the price tag. $2 tril­lion is so far west of crazyville it’s insane more con­ser­v­a­tive blogs aren’t up in arms. Between the Paris accords and the Lon­don attack, it’s prob­a­bly just so far down the news food chain. Besides, they couldn’t pull it off, could they?

Actu­ally, yes. If the econ­omy turns south in the next year, it’s very likely this pro­posal could become one of the ral­ly­ing cries the Democ­rats use to gain con­trol of the House and Sen­ate. Dubbed the “21st Cen­tury New Deal for Jobs,” they hope to invoke the huge gov­ern­ment expan­sion of FDR to drive sup­port. Like Pres­i­dent Obama’s stim­u­lus, they’ll use it to pro­mote the con­cept of “shovel-​ready jobs” to help put Amer­i­cans back to work.

Here’s the prob­lem. Amer­i­cans are going back to work already. The econ­omy is look­ing so much stronger now than it did just a cou­ple of years ago that the Democ­rats would have to hope for a near-​collapse in order to make their case an impor­tant one for the 2018 elec­tions. Granted, the econ­omy isn’t as strong as pub­lic num­bers show, but more peo­ple are work­ing today than they were last year and if the GOP’s agenda pans out as expected, we can expect the jobs num­bers to stay strong.

There are still many pit­falls the GOP needs to over­come in order to main­tain their majori­ties. Oba­macare repeal and tax reform are right there at the top. Jobs are the peren­nial con­cern, so if the GOP deliv­ers, the Democ­rats will have to try to spook vot­ers instead of win­ning them over with their New Deal. The fur­ther we can push away from FDR’s legacy of expan­sive gov­ern­ment, the better.

In recent months I’ve held my tongue regarding President Trump’s upcoming proposal for a $1 trillion infrastructure plan. While it goes against my firm beliefs in reining in the federal government and reducing budgets rather than increasing them, it’s premature to oppose it wholeheartedly. After all, his promise to make private investments the bulk of the funding may not turn out to be another “Mexico is going to pay for it” moment.

The Democrats aren’t waiting before condemning the initiative. They decided to double it with no pretense of shifting burden away from taxpayers. Their plan calls for $200 billion per year for a decade fully funded by the public.

Few would argue the infrastructure doesn’t need improvement and interstate travel falls squarely in line with the federal mandate which is why I’ve held my opposition to Trump’s proposal until we see it. With that said, I don’t need to see a single detail of the Democrats’ proposal beyond the price tag. $2 trillion is so far west of crazyville it’s insane more conservative blogs aren’t up in arms. Between the Paris accords and the London attack, it’s probably just so far down the news food chain. Besides, they couldn’t pull it off, could they?

Actually, yes. If the economy turns south in the next year, it’s very likely this proposal could become one of the rallying cries the Democrats use to gain control of the House and Senate. Dubbed the “21st Century New Deal for Jobs,” they hope to invoke the huge government expansion of FDR to drive support. Like President Obama’s stimulus, they’ll use it to promote the concept of “shovel-ready jobs” to help put Americans back to work.

Here’s the problem. Americans are going back to work already. The economy is looking so much stronger now than it did just a couple of years ago that the Democrats would have to hope for a near-collapse in order to make their case an important one for the 2018 elections. Granted, the economy isn’t as strong as public numbers show, but more people are working today than they were last year and if the GOP’s agenda pans out as expected, we can expect the jobs numbers to stay strong.

There are still many pitfalls the GOP needs to overcome in order to maintain their majorities. Obamacare repeal and tax reform are right there at the top. Jobs are the perennial concern, so if the GOP delivers, the Democrats will have to try to spook voters instead of winning them over with their New Deal. The further we can push away from FDR’s legacy of expansive government, the better.