Trump Loved Talking About Infrastructure. When Will He Actually Get to Work?

Matthew McMullan

Matthew McMullan Communications Manager, Alliance for American Manufacturing

The Trump administration has a lot of irons in the fire these days.

Some you can’t plan for: you’ve got your natural disasters and your man-made ones.

And some you can (and should probably avoid).

But here’s one iron that’s just, you know, off to the side and cooling off: An infrastructure plan.

President Trump’s vaunted, $1 trillion infrastructure bill has been sidetracked. There are still no details from the White House, and Congress is instead working on a big tax reform package. Tax reform, you’ve no doubt heard, is really hard to do, so that means it could take a while for Washington to clear it’s agenda. It’s even been suggested that Republican legislators (who control both the House and Senate) may even take another whack at the Affordable Care Act before turning to a funding package for the nation’s rails, roads and bridges.

Suffice to say: Infrastructure isn’t high on anyone’s agenda – at least not on the agendas of anyone in a position of power in Washington. And the president, who at this point seems to be more of a go-with-your-gut guy, has even questioned a central tenet of his own plan – that it would be built around a public-private partnership funding mechanism.

That means they’re going to have to build this thing from scratch, while Republicans on the Hill wait for an outline of the administration’s plans. They think maybe they’ll get one next week.

"We hope they're going to make it public in the next week or so," Rep. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.), who chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said this week. "It will be more of an outline or principles."

It’s quite clear that infrastructure spending (if it’s got Buy America rules attached to it) can really boost American manufacturing employment. And it’s disappointing President Trump – who campaigned hard on manufacturing issues – would attach such little importance to getting an infrastructure bill passed.

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Reposted from AAM

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Alliance for American Manufacturing

Union Matters

An Invitation to Sunny Miami. What Could Be Bad?

Sam Pizzigati

Sam Pizzigati Editor, Too Much online magazine

If a billionaire “invites” you somewhere, you’d better go. Or be prepared to suffer the consequences. This past May, hedge fund kingpin Carl Icahn announced in a letter to his New York-based staff of about 50 that he would be moving his business operations to Florida. But the 83-year-old Icahn assured his staffers they had no reason to worry: “My employees have always been very important to the company, so I’d like to invite you all to join me in Miami.” Those who go south, his letter added, would get a $50,000 relocation benefit “once you have established your permanent residence in Florida.” Those who stay put, the letter continued, can file for state unemployment benefits, a $450 weekly maximum that “you can receive for a total of 26 weeks.” What about severance from Icahn Enterprises? The New York Post reported last week that the two dozen employees who have chosen not to uproot their families and follow Icahn to Florida “will be let go without any severance” when the billionaire shutters his New York offices this coming March. Bloomberg currently puts Carl Icahn’s net worth at $20.5 billion.

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