JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Kingsport Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger this week said she is against the Biden administration’s $2.3 trillion “Build Back Better” infrastructure proposal.
President Joe Biden Wednesday unveiled the plan, which is divided into four areas of infrastructure:
- Public water, health and broadband systems
- Community care for seniors, and
- Innovation research and development
Rep. Harshbarger told News Channel 11 she does not believe all of these categories should be considered “infrastructure.”
“Why can’t we do a clean bill? Why can’t we talk about one thing at a time? So it will be clear and you will know exactly what you’re voting on instead of putting a hodgepodge of things that have nothing to do with infrastructure. I mean, I can’t even remember what some of the things today – childcare is infrastructure, and there’s two or three other things that I’m like, ‘I’m all for childcare, but is that infrastructure? Not,'” Harshbarger said.
She added that she will not stand for the passing of this bill when it comes to Biden’s “clean energy” campaign promises coming to light through this proposal.
“I look at some of the other things they’re doing and they’re talking about $600 billion or more – I can’t even remember the figure, it’s something you can’t even wrap your head around – They’re talking about the charging stations. How many people do you know that have an electric car right now? Duh. But the thing is, if you’re looking at the bulk of that bill going for something absolutely unrelated to infrastructure, it should make the American people angry, just like it’s making me angry,” she said.
She also said she does not think funds are evenly allocated to infrastructure improvement projects.
“If you delve into this bill, they are very clever in the way that they name a bill and it makes people think ‘why would you vote against that?’ Well, I’ll tell you why because only 5% is allocated for infrastructure on roads and bridges, another 2% for maritime ports and airports. That’s 7%,” she said. “That’s something that I won’t be voting for, I’ll tell you right now. I mean, I’m all about making our bridges and our roadways and our airports and our ports safe, and getting them up to speed, but not at the cost of $3 trillion, when only 7% is going toward that.”
Virginia Senator Tim Kaine was in Southwest Virginia this week.
The Democratic senator told News Channel 11 that he is for the passage of this legislation.
“We definitely have learned that we have got to have better broadband so that kids, particularly in rural Virginia, have access. We also need to do some physical improvements, even of school buildings that, otherwise, are in pretty good shape. Better filtration systems and things like that, to get kids back,” he said.
Kaine said he was eager to see improvements on Virginian broadband, especially in rural areas like in Southwest Virginia.
“I think we’re going to put a lot of money into broadband, but I just want it to be spent right. And so what is the best way to spend broadband dollars, to really get to communities and families that are hard to reach,” he added.