President Obama is pressing ahead on his budget priorities of health care, education, energy and the environment.
But three top civic leaders are reminging him not to neglect infrastructure.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press” with David Gregory on Sunday to urge a higher priority for national spending on infrastructure….
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA) (L) speaks as New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg listens during a pre-taping of “Meet the Press” at NBC studios on March 20, 2009 in Washington. The program aired on March 22, 2009. The governor of America’s largest state and the mayor of its largest city called on the federal government during the show to dramatically boost its spending on bridges, sewers, high-speed rail and other infrastructure. Picture taken March 20, 2009. REUTERS/Brendan Smialowski-Meet the Press/Handout
By Rob Hotakainen, McClatchy
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger went to the White House on Friday with Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to press President Barack Obama for more federal aid for infrastructure projects.
Noting that California’s unemployment rate had risen to 10.5 percent, Schwarzenegger said a good response would be to increase government spending on roads and bridges and other projects.
“This creates jobs,” he said. “We had a terrific meeting.”
Schwarzenegger and Obama appear to be developing a close relationship. There was no mention Friday of the moment in October when, in the heat of the presidential election, Schwarzenegger compared Obama’s policies to European socialism.
Schwarzenegger said at the time that Obama “says he wants to pursue the same spread-the-wealth ideas that Europe had decades ago.”
On Thursday, when the two appeared together in Los Angeles, the governor praised Obama for his “courageous leadership and the great commitment he has displayed.” And he said California is “benefiting tremendously” from the economic stimulus package Obama has put together.
Obama reciprocated, calling Schwarzenegger “one of the great innovators of state government” who has turned out to be “just an outstanding partner” for his administration.
“I’m grateful for him,” Obama said.