Senate Republicans block Obama’s infrastructure jobs bill

| Friday, November 04, 2011

U.S. Senate Republicans have blocked passage of President Obama’s jobs bill that included $50 in infrastructure spending and $10 billion in startup money for a national infrastructure bank. Lawmakers are now turning their attention to an upcoming markup of a two-year surface transportation authorization bill scheduled for next week.

Republican leadership used procedural tactics, not uncommon in the Senate, to block the bill from coming to a vote. Even though this particular bill failed to pass, Democrats and Republicans say they’re working to garner support for the longer-term authorization bill.

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee plans to mark up its two-year proposal on Wednesday, Nov. 9. Committee leadership is calling the bill MAP-21. If it passes it would replace SAFETEA-LU, which became law in 2005 and remains the status quo despite having expired in 2009.

House leadership is working on its own version of a long-term extension that would last six years.

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