The Campaign Spot

Psst, Mr. President, You Gave This Speech Before!

Obama, yesterday:

So, that’s why, Milwaukee, today, I am announcing a new plan for rebuilding and modernizing America’s roads and rails and runways for the long term. (Applause.) I want America to have the best infrastructure in the world. We used to have the best infrastructure in the world. We can have it again. We are going to make it happen. (Applause.)

Over the next six years, over the next six years, we are going to rebuild 150,000 miles of our roads — that’s enough to circle the world six times. That’s a lot of road. We’re going to lay and maintain 4,000 miles of our railways –- enough to stretch coast to coast. We’re going to restore 150 miles of runways. And we’re going to advance a next-generation air-traffic control system to reduce travel time and delays for American travelers. (Applause.) I think everybody can agree on that.

Obama, February 6, 2009:

But broadly speaking, the package is the right size, it has the right scope and it has the right priorities: To create 3 to 4 million jobs and to do it in a way that lays the groundwork for long term growth, by fixing our schools; modernizing health care to lower costs; repairing our roads, bridges, levees, and other vital infrastructure; move us toward energy independence.

Obama, February 17, 2009:

Starting today, our administration will be working day and night to provide more aid for the unemployed, create immediate jobs building our roads and our bridges, make long-term investments in a smarter energy grid, and so much more.

Obama, April 13, 2009:

We passed the recovery plan less than two months ago. Two weeks later, I came here to DOT to announce that we would be investing $28 billion to rebuild and repair our highways, roads and bridges.

Obama, April 29, 2009:

Across the state, roughly 20,000 transportation jobs will be supported by the Recovery Act so that Missourians rebuilding your roads, your bridges, your rails.

Obama, February 22, 2010:

We followed the gospel of Governors Rendell and Schwarzenegger and invested in our infrastructure, creating private-sector jobs, rebuilding today’s crumbling roads and bridges, but also constructing the smart grids and the high-speed rails that are so critical to our future.

I didn’t realize that even White House speechwriters have summer reruns.

To his credit, this is the first time the president has emphasized “runway restoration” as a central element of the economic recovery.


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