Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.), a senior member of the Commerce Committee and longtime advocate of expanding America's high-speed rail system, applauded the Obama Administration's plan to make high-speed rail accessible to 80 percent of Americans within 25 years.
Today, Vice President Biden announced the Administration's comprehensive proposal to put high-speed rail on equal footing with highways and other surface transportation programs. He also announced plans to commit $53 billion over six years to further construction of a national high-speed and intercity passenger rail network.
"Joe Biden's right. We've fallen far behind in high speed rail and it's costing American businesses. Other countries are investing in modern transportation systems while we're stuck with clogged highways and our existing rail system is oversubscribed. This investment will help connect our markets, move products and people, and create good jobs here at home. This is a big step but much more is needed, including an infrastructure bank. I look forward to working with the Administration to modernize our transportation system," said Sen. Kerry.
Senator Kerry, a fierce advocate for an advanced, high-speed rail system throughout the nation, plans to reintroduce legislation to transform America's outdated and underfunded passenger rail system. He first introduced the High-Speed Rail for America Act in 2008. Over the years, Kerry has argued that high speed rail is essential to American competitiveness, most recently at a Commerce Committee hearing in September 2010 entitled "The Federal Role in National Rail Policy." He also worked to ensure inclusion of $8 billion in funding in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to expand high speed rail projects.