Infrastructure a new stimulus plan

Capitol Hill at sunrise


Bill Radke: Chances are, Congress will meet soon after the election to approve another multibillion-dollar spending package. Democrats say we need it to kickstart the economy. This time, instead of individual tax rebates, much of the stimulus will probably go to infrastructure improvements. Later today, a House committee will consider what types of projects we need the most. Marketplace's John Dimsdale has the story.

John Dimsdale: States have 3,000 highway and bridge repairs and improvements ready to go. And John Irons at the Economic Policy Institute says that type of government spending is just what the economy needs.

Jack Irons: You know, we know we're going to have to repair these bridges. If we're going to spend that money anyway, let's spend it now, let's accelerate it, now when we can create good jobs and also meet more fundamental needs that the economy has.

Irons says improved transportation and greener buildings will mean a more competitive and energy-efficient economy.

But the Cato Institute's Chris Edwards doubts the government will actually create any new jobs.

Chris Edwards: If the government taxes or borrows $10 billion new dollars to build bridges and roads, it's sucking the $10 billion out of the private sector economy somewhere else. You know taxes are going to have to be higher than they otherwise would be.

But the spending will help the construction industry, where unemployment is close to 10 percent. Car repair shops, though, may be less happy to have the government fixing potholes.

In Washington, I'm John Dimsdale for Marketplace.

About the author

As head of Marketplace’s Washington, D.C. bureau, John Dimsdale provides insightful commentary on the intersection of government and money for the entire Marketplace portfolio.
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If they had given the American public the 85 billion dollars they just gave AIG then we could have paid off our homes stimulating the housing market even providing some people with the finances to buy a home, but instead our Government that is suppose to be for the people again put the screws to the people and gave the money to big banks who have once again proven that they know how to take our money and run leaving the American economy in a mess because ou government did not bail out the people who could help bail out this country. We the little people are the ones who fund our government and this Nation and the banks with our little checks, and now instead of bailing us out so that we can help our country get bailed out they just gave away our money. Oh and by the way all that money Iraq is sitting on, well I think their bill is past due for us supposedly giving them their freedom with our American soldiers blood.

I wish they had spent some of that money to improve public transportation. That would be one good consequence of all these mess.

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