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Klobuchar infrastructure bill fails

WASHINGTON — As expected, the Senate voted down Sen. Amy Klobuchar's Rebuild America Jobs Act on Thursday afternoon. The vote was 51-49, nine votes shy of the 60 needed to move the bill forward.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar
REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Sen. Amy Klobuchar

The bill would invest $60 billion into federal infrastructure projects and a public-private infrastructure bank. It would be paid for with a 0.7 percent surtax on individuals' incomes over $1 million. The bill is a component of President Barack Obama's American Jobs Act.

The bill's defeat is the second the Senate has handed the AJA — a component meant to support teachers and other public service jobs failed in October.

Immediately after Republicans blocked the bill's passage, Democrats did the same to a Republican bill, defeating legislation that would authorize federal transportation projects and repeal some Environmental Protection Agency regulations.

Devin Henry can be reached at dhenry@minnpost.com.

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Comments (6)

Sigh. This isn’t government, it’s paralysis.

Of *course* Republicans are going to defeat a bill that adds a surcharge to the taxes of the fraction of one percent. Protecting the interests of the wealthy is the Republican raison d’etre now, and increasing taxes, no matter how sensible to at least attempt to help get the economy out of the sort-of-depression it’s been in is an ideological no-no. Meanwhile, the Democrats aren’t clever enough to see the trap laid by their opponents in combining the very dissimilar transportation projects and EPA regulations, and, apparently lacking a better alternative, throw the infrastructure baby out with the EPA bathwater.

Meanwhile, Republicans have found the time and energy to pass a bill reiterating that “In God We Trust” will be on the national currency, though there was no movement, not even a hint, that godless liberals were plotting to remove the slogan from either paper or coin. Empty values enacted. Real values revealed.

Mr Henry: The Democrats did not "do the same." The Republicans used a procedural maneuver (and a pulsillanimous Democratic leadership) to block a bill that had majority support. The Democrats allowed a vote on a bill that failed because it was not supported by a majority. Notice the difference? Sheesh.

I believe that “Obama jobs bill” and the “Amy K jobs bill” both faced bi-partisan opposition.

The President and Amy K could not even get all the Senate Democrats to support this spending and taxing.

Amy must be well liked for her quaint bill to have been given such face saving treatment.

One can be sure the same bill from Angry Al wouldn't have been granted a similar ceremonial treatment.

Of course, Obama and Klobuchar were never sincere about helping with the jobs problem or about getting passage of a jobs bill. If they were sincere, they would have done something long, long ago instead of coldly ignoring the issue for year after year.

This bill was just slapped together to convince the gullible that Obama and the Democrats care about jobs. Obama is claiming to support other bills with popular support too such as a student loan relief bill and a mortgage relief bill.

Of course, Obama will never actually follow through on anything that is actually good for ordinary citizens. Just as he sold out on universal health care and even made the health care situation worse, he'll be wimping out on these other issues too.

Democrat Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Independent Joe Lieberman of Connecticut provided the two No votes that defeated this bill (StarTribune 11/4).

So Nebraska and Connecticut need no jobs?

Good news for Connecticut and America: Senator Lieberman is not seeking re-election in 2012, but Chris Shays (a real Republican, like Eisenhower) is going to run for his seat.