WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today joined Mike Emanuel on FOX News Channel to discuss the latest with infrastructure negotiations.
Recently, Senator Capito and several of her Republican colleagues unveiled a framework to improve the nation’s infrastructure. The Republican infrastructure framework, which includes $568 billion in infrastructure investments over a five-year period, will serve as a guide as the Senate continues to develop bipartisan bills that will go through regular order. This is the largest infrastructure investment that Republicans have ever put forth. Last week, Senator Capito spoke directly to President Joe Biden about the framework and their mutual desire to work together to find common ground and address these challenges.
ON WORKING WITH THE WHITE HOUSE: “Certainly that was the substance of the conversation I had with the president on Thursday. He said, ‘let’s start to narrow down where we really think infrastructure is—where you think infrastructure is—and how that interplays with what I would like to see on physical or core infrastructure.’ Let’s see what kind of program that is, let’s talk about pay fors. Let’s get serious about really trying to reach a negotiated infrastructure package. I’m very encouraged by this. I’ve talked to a lot of my colleagues and certainly talking constantly with the White House and others. I just feel like there is a real desire and will for us to work together on something we’ve traditionally worked together on through many, many years.”
ON FINDING THE SWEET SPOT: “What I think you have to do is look at the president’s plan at $2.2 trillion—it has a lot of social infrastructure, human infrastructure, and other things that I don’t think if you ask somebody on the street here in West Virginia, ‘what does infrastructure mean to you,’ it doesn’t meet that definition. Infrastructure—we’re talking physical road, bridges, ports, waterways, broadband, and those types of really job-creating infrastructure projects that we need to modernize our transportation and other systems. We’re working with the White House, and I think it’s been very open door, we’ve been very encouraged to keep moving forward, and that’s what we’re going to do… I’m going to try to reach that sweet spot that we’re looking for to be able to work together to get a bill across the table.”
ON TAX INCREASES: “I think it’s important to note that the Republican plan that I put forward with a lot of other ranking members of committees does not have a tax increase in there. We think we can pay for this with expanded user fees—that would be people who are now not even paying into the use of the highways like the use of electric vehicles and others. We think repurposing some of the COVID—but particularly the city-state—dollars where they can now not use that for hard infrastructure, except for water infrastructure. We should be able to open up that window for them, which will make our dollars go farther. I think that there are a lot of creative solutions out there that don’t involve raising taxes. I personally don’t want to see the taxes go up. I think it’s the wrong time to be doing that. And if we really concentrate on what we want to get done in terms of infrastructure, I don’t think it’s necessary, and that would be very difficult to get a core member of our Republican caucus to go along with that if that is the direction that the president insisted upon.”
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