Monday, December 10, 2012

Roads and Bridges and Schools, Oh, My!

    Today at the Daimler Detroit Diesel Plant in Redford, MI, President Obama returned to a familiar theme as he pressed Congress to get behind his latest push to raise taxes in order to "invest" in our country's future:

        President Obama, December 10, 2012 - Twitter, Speech Transcript
"I want us to put people back to work rebuilding our roads, bridges, and schools."

    A bit of research reveals just exactly how familiar the theme is:

        President Obama, August 12, 2012 - Campaign Event
"I want to take about half of the money that we were spending on war and let’s start investing it here in rebuilding our schools and roads and bridges."

        President Obama, January 25, 2011 - State of the Union Fact Sheet
The President’s Budget will outline a comprehensive, six-year plan to leverage our resources to repair crumbling roads, bridges, and transit.  [The plan also includes] a new initiative to catalyze private sector investment and upgrade commercial buildings such as offices, stores, schools[.]

        President-reelect Obama, January 28, 2010 - Town Hall, Tampa, FL
"I mean, it's important to repave our roads; it's important to repair our bridges... We can give more money to schools -- that's important[.]"

        President-elect Obama, January 3, 2009 - Weekly Radio Address
"To build a 21st century economy, we must engage contractors across the nation to create jobs rebuilding our crumbling roads, bridges, and schools."

        President-elect Obama, November 22, 2008 - USA Today
President-elect Barack Obama this morning pledges to "put people back to work rebuilding our crumbling roads and bridges, modernizing schools..."

    This is by no means a comprehensive catalog of all of the president's usages of this perennial favorite.   But to find the seeds of the president's "Roads and Bridges and Schools" meme, we must go all the way back to 2004:

        Senator-elect Obama, December 2004 - Chicago Sun Times (Winter Gridiron Dinner)
It is tough, kidded Obama, to live up to all the expectations. There are people in Kenya, his father's homeland, who expect his election to mean the United States will fund new roads, new bridges and new schools.

    So not only didn't Barack Obama's election to the Senate get any roads, bridges, or schools built in Kenya, four years of President Barack Obama didn't even get them built here in America.  To be fair, Obama went on to say this at the Gridiron dinner:
Joked Obama, "I had to explain to them how it works. First comes the invasion, and then billions in aid."
    I guess our roads, bridges and schools should brace for an invasion any day now.  Oh, my!

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