November 29, 2015

Clinton Infrastructure Proposal Is An Admission That The Stimulus Failed

Hillary Clinton rolled out a proposal to address the country’s infrastructure needs in Boston this afternoon with a price tag of at least $275 billion.

In 2009, President Obama said that the stimulus would put 400,000 Americans to work rebuilding the country’s infrastructure, but The Associated Press found that stimulus infrastructure spending “had no effect on local employment and only barely helped the beleaguered construction industry.”

In February 2015, the Congressional Budget Office reported that the stimulus added nearly $840 billion to U.S. budget deficits.

Clinton pledged her plan would allow “100% of American households to have access to quality, affordable high speed Internet.” Sound familiar?  President Obama said this about expanding broadband access under the stimulus:

“But we also looked to the future, and we said, let’s invest in clean energy, let’s invest in research and development, let’s invest in broadband lines to link rural communities with—who don’t have broadband lines, so they can be part of the global economy. All those infrastructure investments and R&D investments not only put to—people back to work short term to help plug that hole that had been created, but it also lays the foundation for long-term economic growth.”

The reality was that spending on broadband access was easily tied up in bureaucratic environmental studies and issues with local approval, to the extent that 18 months after federal funds had been awarded, few companies were even at the point of laying cable.

Now, Clinton is proposing to not only duplicate spending already wasted on failed programs, but to actually double down on stimulus policies. Bloomberg reports:

Clinton’s proposed infrastructure bank would also administer a renewed and expanded version of the Build American Bonds program would also administer part of a renewed and expanded Build American Bonds program, which was launched as part of the 2009 Recovery Act.

So seven years and more than $800 billion dollars later, Clinton is proposing to throw hundreds of billions of additional taxpayer dollars at a problem she and her Party have demonstrated a clear inability to solve.