Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Republican War Against... Bikes And Against Local Government

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Congressman Lieu... real person

I'm sure you remember Michele Bachmann. Confronted with another typical Republican fundraising scandal, she agreed to retire from Congress in return for making the whole ugly mess go away. Her replacement, Tom Emmer, is just as crazy and extreme as she is. Wednesday every single Democrat voted against Emmer's fringy amendment to the 2016 Transportation Bill that would have inserted Big Government into the prerogatives of local communities. Specifically, Emmer doesn't want bike lanes-- or at least doesn't want any federal funds spent on bike lanes.

Even if every Democrat sticks together to oppose these kinds of crackpot Republican proposals, if the House Republicans all stick together they can easily brush the Democrats aside. But they don't always all stick together, and 32 balked at this crazy proposal. It was defeated by two votes-- 212-214. 32 fairly random Republicans crossed the aisle and voted with Pelosi and the Democrats.

Emmer's amendment was worded to prohibit funds from being used to carry out any "enrichment" for any New Start grant request. "Enrichments" are improvements to the transit project that are desired by the project sponsor but are non-integral to the planned functioning of the project, and whose benefits are not captured in whole by the criteria. "Enrichments" are allowable expenses for reimbursement under a future New Starts construction grant.

Ted Lieu (D-CA), a bicycle enthusiast himself, helped rally Democrats against Emmer's amendment. "As a supporter of state and local governments having funding for local transportation projects," he told us, "I voted against the Emmer amendment, which would have negatively impacted local governments’ ability to use federal transit funding for projects such as sidewalks, bicycle access, alternative energy bus vehicles, and other plans desired by local governments."

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3 Comments:

At 11:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's very nice to see so many Asian-Americans defeating the racist, "mercantile" stereotype by stepping up and being proactive forces for the general community.

 
At 10:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Congressman Lieu! They may not see the value in bike lanes or sidewalks in MN, but we sure do appreciate them in CA!

 
At 1:39 AM, Anonymous Rebeca Aybar said...

I really appreciate you. Nice work. Keep The good work.

 

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