by Dan Conti, Kentucky Public Radio
Senator Rand Paul’s bid to take money from highway beautification projects and use it to repair bridges and other transportation infrastructure has failed on the senate floor. The Kentucky Republican proposed eliminating money for landscaping projects like walking and bike paths and re-directing the funds for bridge work.
“This amendment simply takes funds from beautification and puts them into bridges,” he said. “As legislators, we need to prioritize and spend money on what is most important to us. Some on the other side may like the beautification projects. We like them also. But we are running a $1.5 trillion deficit.”
Paul urged senators to support the amendment, telling his colleagues it should appeal to Democrats and Republicans alike.
“I’ve stood with the president in the shadows of our crumbling bridges,” Paul said. “I told the president personally I would help to rebuild the bridges. This amendment should be non-controversial. This amendment spends no new money and raises no new taxes.”
Despite his entreaty, the amendment had no Democratic support. Thirty-eight Republicans supported the measure, while seven did not.