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Motion to Instruct Conferees on H.R. 4348, Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012, Part II

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. CONNOLLY of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of my good friend from Maryland's Motion to Instruct House conferees to bring up the bipartisan Senate transportation bill. In the 10 most congested cities in America--including the Washington DC region which both Mr. HOYER and I represent--drivers spend more than 40 hours a year stuck in traffic. That's an entire work week lost to congestion, yet all the Republican majority has offered in response is more partisan gridlock.

Americans are waiting for road improvements, bridge repairs, and more transit options. The American economy is waiting for more robust job growth. The nation lost 28,000 construction jobs last month and more than 2 million construction jobs since the Great Recession began.

Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower knew investing in infrastructure would create jobs and spur the economy so he created the American interstate highway system. This March, the Senate passed a bipartisan transportation bill--with 22 Republicans on board--to alleviate gridlock on our streets and in the halls of Congress. But so far, House Republicans have refused to even bring it up for a vote, for fear that it might actually pass!

A robust transportation program such as the bipartisan Senate bill helps both American commuters, and the American economy, get moving again. If we are going to create jobs and ease commutes, the Republican majority must stop idling. I urge my colleagues to support Mr. HOYER'S Motion to Instruct.


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