CA House leader slams brakes on federal funding for high-speed rail


By James Poulos | Cal Watchdog

High-speed rail has a new obstacle: new House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield.

McCarthy, who has long opposed the plan, has announced that he’ll block any new initiatives to direct federal funds toward the project. According to the Wall Street Journal, McCarth yinsisted he will “do all that I can to ensure not one dollar of federal funding goes to boondoggles like California’s high-speed rail. The government’s handling of hard earned taxpayer dollars must be based on merit and facts, not upon a desired legacy.”

The legacy in question, of course, belongs to Gov. Jerry Brown. Brown has been unstinting in his support of high-speed rail, defending it from Republican critics and diverting and-trade revenues away from environmental uses favored by Democrats. For his part, the governor told the Journal that McCarthy and congressional Republicans “have decided that it’s better to treat high-speed rail as a political football, than as a great civic opportunity.” Federal dollars flow to California bridges and roads, Brown reasoned, implying they ought to benefit the state’s controversial rail project as well.

at Cal Watchdog.