The Infrastructure Bill Is Joe Biden’s ‘Shovel-Ready Jobs’ Moment

The Infrastructure Bill Is Joe Biden's 'Shovel-Ready Jobs' Moment

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President Joe Biden’s former boss, then-president-elect Barack Obama, appeared on Meet The Press and declared that his goal was an infrastructure overhaul that would create “shovel-ready jobs” amid the recession America faced. As the Washington Post pointed out later, the phrase appeared to be pretty much new (they discovered its origin might have been based on Hillary Clinton’s previous statements regarding “shovel-ready jobs” for upstate New York), but it took off.

Everyone was saying it and praising Obama for such a brilliant messaging move. The media didn’t just discuss the talking point, they celebrated it.

One year and an $800 billion dollar infrastructure plan later, those shovel-ready jobs never happened. Asked about it by the New York Times, Obama admitted he now understood there’s really no such thing. “The problem is that spending it out takes a long time, because there’s really nothing – there’s no such thing as shovel-ready projects,” he told them ahead of the 2010 midterms. At that time, Obama was expecting Democrats to win or Republicans to maybe get lucky.

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