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Craig votes against transportation bill

Bill too expensive, goes beyond President’s request

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Idaho Sen. Larry Craig, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, voted against S.1072, the Highway Funding Bill on Feb. 12, citing the high price tag of the legislation and the current budget deficit.

Sen. Craig said:

“This legislation reauthorizes our nation’s surface transportation, freight, and mass transit programs, which are so vital to the infrastructure of my State of Idaho and to the nation. I would like to thank my colleague, Senator Mike Crapo, for his hard and careful work in developing this legislation. Under the formula Senator Crapo helped write, Idaho will greatly benefit from the formula’s allocation for both our highway system and our transit needs.

“That being said, I believe this legislation sends the wrong signal to the American taxpayers. It is calculated at a total cost of $318 billion, which is an increase of $62 billion or 24 percent over the President’s proposal. In a year when the federal deficit is projected to reach $477 billion, Congress must act responsibly by keeping spending under control.

“It is a tough choice for me to oppose this bill. However, I cannot allow for future generations of Americans to pay for the fiscal irresponsibility of our actions now.

“It is my hope that when this legislation is placed before a conference of the House and Senate, fiscal responsibility prevails, and I will be able to cast a vote in favor of a final conference report.”