Senate Blocks President's Infrastructure Jobs Strategy

$60M third part of Obama work plan shot down
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 4, 2011 4:31 AM CDT
Senate Blocks President's Infrastructure Jobs Strategy
President Barack Obama speaks in front of the Key Bridge, which spans Arlington, Va. and Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011, urging Congress to pass the infrastructure piece of the American Jobs Act.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Another piece of President Obama's jobs plan has been defeated in the Senate. A measure to spend $50 billion on infrastructure improvement and $10 billion in seed money for a new infrastructure bank fell short of the 60 votes needed for debate, reports the Washington Post. Every Senate Republican voted against the bill, as did Joe Lieberman and Democrat Ben Nelson. The measure would have been funded by a 0.7% surtax on those making over $1 million a year.

"It makes no sense when you consider that this bill was made up of the same kinds of common-sense proposals that many of these senators have fought for in the past," Obama said. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell charged that Democrats had created a bill that they knew would fail because of GOP opposition to tax increases. "Democrats are more interested in building a campaign message than in rebuilding roads and bridges," he said. A rival Republican bill that would have used unspent money from other government programs to extend existing infrastructure programs was defeated by a 53-47 vote. (More Senate stories.)

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