Friday, August 8, 2008

Obama on High-Speed Rail.

It's no secret that Barack Obama has the best plans for rail and transportation in this country. John McCain's plans aren't just ineffective, they're basically non-existent. (If you can find me a link with his Urban Policy plans, send it to me. After ten minutes of perusing his site, I couldn't find anything.)

Obama recently spoke here in Ohio, and from Youngstown this is what he had to say about High-Speed Rail throughout Ohio and The Midwest:

“If you think about the Midwest, think about right here, what we’ve got is all kind of towns that we could connect,” Obama said. “All of these cities are, they basically take in the air about 45 minutes to an hour to fly.”

“But by the time you get to the airport,” Obama continued, “take off your shoes, get to the terminal, realize that your flight’s been delayed two hours, go pay $10 for a cup of coffee, and a sandwich for another $10, come back, you get on the plane, you’re sitting on the tarmac for another 25 minutes, you finally take off, you’re circling above the city for another half hour, when you land they can’t find your luggage, and then you get to where you’re going — by the time it’s all done it’s a five-hour trip! …So the time is right now for us to start thinking about high-speed rail as an alternative to air transportation, connecting all these cities and think about what a great project that would be in terms of rebuilding America.”

Luckily help is on the way. As I wrote in the article, The Race America Doesn't Want to Win, Washington is finally working to bring back rail in the United States. Here in Ohio we will see part of the largest impact as the Three C's will finally be connected via high-speed rail. However, although the Passenger Rail Act passed with a veto-proof majority in the senate and congress, it still will not be a promising future if our next President does not support AMTRAK or any other form of public transportation.