Sunday, January 21, 2007

Vote for Bill Richardson

Mr. Richardson just threw his hat into the ring this morning. This guy is such a longshot for the Democrat presidential nomination that you might think even Nancy Pelosi has a better chance. So why would a conservative blogger tell anyone to vote for him?

Well, for his position on one issue: He likes Passenger Rail.

Mr. Richardson is responsible for the New Mexico Rail Runner, and for getting the Federal funding for it. Mr. Richardson believes that there is room for more mass transport, and it ain't in the skies. Finally, he is not bashful about putting public money on the line for it.

We can't say the same for any other potential presidential candidate, although Barak Obama has been almost as active in procuring federal transportation funds for Illinois. In Mr. Obama's case, he and Dick Durbin talked a good talk, but when it comes down to it, most of the money they procured will be spent on highways. And on the Republican side, forget about it. Only Rudy Giulani may come anywhere close to being sympathetic to funding for major Passenger Rail projects.

On a low note, Hillary Clinton is now also in the race. Her focus will not be on transportation. We are not even sure if she knows how to drive a car. When the subject comes up, and it will, she will listen to Democrat advisers who tell her to put the big bucks in public transit. We all know that all Democrat voters live in the inner city and can't afford a car. (For those of you who don't understand Limbaugh-like sarcasm, that was some of it.)

In the opinion of Mister Trains, there is nothing wrong with public transit. We usually keep an historic CTA car of one sort or another as a wallpaper on this computer. (A 6-year old Pentium 4 that could use some public funding.) It just isn't presently what this country needs in added quantity.

On a high note, we do not think anyone truly has a clue as to where these candidates will be standing or sitting in February 2008. The drive-by media are still treating the Republican primaries as though they don't exist. So everybody still has a chance to opt in for Passenger Rail in a big way.

Given the stakes, we should all try to impress upon our duly elected officeholders, and upon their potential successors, the importance of Passenger Rail.

© 2007 - C. A. Turek -

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