WASHINGTON, D.C. – Last week congress passed a massive $1.2 trillion dollar infrastructure bill. A local New York republican Representative is defending his vote for this bill while many of his republican colleagues went the other direction.
After the senate passed the $1.2 trillion dollar infrastructure bill a few months ago, the House chamber erupted in cheers late Friday night after moving that bill forward to President Biden’s desk on a 228 to 206 vote.
Members touted that it will deliver $500-billion dollars in new federal investments over the next five years, touching everything from ports, bridges, roads and broadband.
New York Representative Tom Reed said this bill is critical for his district and for America.
“We got almost $100-billion dollars when you look at the rail provisions and we make the locomotives and the passenger rail cars here in the district and I’ll just tell you that will help folks have a job for years to come,” said Rep. Reed (R-NY).
The congressman is one of 13 republicans who crossed party lines to vote for this bill.
“To me this was a vote that I believed in,” said Rep. Reed. “It was the right vote.”
Other republicans who voted down the bill said they voted ‘no’ for a slew of reasons, like it would increase inflation while others said it will just add to our debt.
Representative Glenn Thompson said in a statement:
“There was an opportunity to come together and draft a bipartisan, bicameral bill to address America’s aging infrastructure. Rather, House Democrats boldly linked infrastructure to a spending bill that is full of budget gimmicks and will cost American taxpayers trillions of dollars. To add insult to injury, the bill fails to adequately address one of the most critical infrastructure needs, broadband connectivity. This is completely unacceptable and further reflects how out of touch Speaker Pelosi is with the concerns of everyday American families.”
Representative Fred Keller (R-PA) called it an irresponsible democratic package and released his statement following his ‘no’ vote:
“I voted no on Speaker Pelosi’s infrastructure bill last night because it does more to put our kids and grandkids into debt than it does to fix roads, bridges, and critical infrastructure that Pennsylvanians rely on. Less than half of this bill goes towards traditional infrastructure. Worse, it paves the way for Washington Democrats’ reconciliation package that includes socialist priorities like a natural gas tax, mass amnesty for illegal aliens, Green New Deal mandates, and 87,000 new IRS agents to spy on your bank accounts. Speaker Pelosi knows this and that’s why the vote happened in the cover of darkness while the American people were sleeping. Big government spending is out of control.”
Representative Mike Kelly (R-PA) also voted against this bill.
“Roads, rivers, runways, railways, making sure that they the people in the rural areas have broadband, that is a good spend,” said Kelly. “50 cents of every dollar will address that, the other 50 cents is for stuff I’ve never heard of before and don’t look at is a really good return.”
But when it comes down to infrastructure, Rep. Reed said this should not be a bipartisan issue.
“This investment is going to benefit American workers and American people and I would just tell you, those that want to play politics 24/7 that’s their choice but I came to Washington to get something done.”
Rep. Reed wants to make clear that just because he voted for this infrastructure bill, he will be voting against Biden’s proposed$1.75- trillion dollar social spending and climate change legislation.