Carper Statement on Long-Awaited Meeting with Secretary Chao, White House Officials on Infrastructure

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, released the following statement after attending a long-awaited briefing from Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and White House officials about infrastructure issues for EPW Committee members. Senator Carper originally requested such a meeting with Secretary Chao back in September 2017. At a hearing before the EPW Committee in May 2017, Secretary Chao stated that the administration’s infrastructure principles would be released at the end of the month and would be followed by a legislative proposal in the third quarter of 2017.

“For a year now, my Democratic colleagues and I have been eager to hear infrastructure ideas from our Republican counterparts in Congress and in the administration so that we can get to work. I appreciate the time Secretary Chao and White House officials like Gary Cohn spent with our committee today, and I am hopeful that we will finally see the long-promised infrastructure proposal from the Trump Administration sooner rather than later.

“While there is no shortage of issues on which the president and I disagree, the kind of large scale trillion dollar infrastructure investment that then-candidate Trump talked about is something that has the potential to elicit bipartisan support here in Congress. As a businessman, I’m sure President Trump can appreciate that business leaders across the country have been telling me for years that, in order to boost America’s global competitiveness and create jobs, we need to make serious investments in our country’s infrastructure to ensure it is more modern and more efficient. Decades of woefully underinvesting in our nation’s infrastructure has resulted not only in aging roads, highways, bridges, railways and waterways across the country, but also in sacrificed economic growth. I would urge the president to seize this opportunity and follow through with a bold infrastructure plan that resonated with so many Americans on the campaign trail.”