Blumenauer, DeFazio blast Republicans over transpo bill

Oregon Congressmen Earl Blumenauer and Peter DeFazio are pulling no punches when it comes to leveling criticism at the House transportation bill that was released yesterday.

Referring to it as the, “Republican Highway and Transportation Bill,” Blumenauer said in an official statement, “I am appalled at the fantasy finance scheme Republicans are proposing.” Blumenauer is a senior member of the House Budget and Ways and Means committees, so he focused his criticisms on financial issues instead of simply bashing the bill for being anti-bike.

Here’s more from Blumenauer’s official statement (emphasis mine):

“Rather than working in a bipartisan fashion to find revenue for the Highway Trust Fund, House Republicans instead would tie revenues from oil and gas drilling in the Arctic Wildlife Refuge and in our coastal waters to transportation funding. Drilling in these areas is opposed by the public and runs the same environmental risks that gave us the Deepwater Horizon disaster. What’s more, my colleagues know full well that revenues from this drilling would do almost nothing to close our funding gap. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that the best case scenario would result in $5 billion over ten years, when we need $60 billion over five years to fund the Trust Fund. This bill’s reliance on such an inadequate funding scheme shows just how unserious and partisan an effort it is at real transportation reform.”