So….did you hear about the state Chief Executive who was offered more than two billion dollars to start a construction project..and he turned it down? Yup…..two billion plus in tax-free federal dollars…..”here ya go….take it….go build a high-speed railroad and we’ll figure out later where the rest of the money will come from…..probably 3 or 4 billion more to be needed.”
Not too many Chief Executives……certainly not political Chief Executives would turn down that kind of cash, but the Governor of Florida just did it. “Thanks but no thanks” says Governor Rick Scott in Tallahassee. “There are a lot of places that money could be spent, far more worthy than a high-speed train between Tampa and Orlando….or worse yet, Orlando to Miami.”
This one really has the political hacks on both sides of the aisle scratching their head. U. S. Senator Bill Nelson..a Democrat who once rode a rocket into space certainly knows how to spend federal money…which we don’t have. He can’t believe Governor Scott turned down all that cash. Congressman John Mica, a Republican who happens to chair the House Transportation Infrastructure Committee, also happens to live just outside Orlando so of course he’s all in favor of this boondoggle. Man, this country to this day, has failed to build a single high-speed rail that could even come close to those in Japan, several in Europe and the fastest of all in China and we want to build our first one to connect Tampa and Disney World? Give me a break……Boston to New York maybe, Boston to Washington maybe…New York to Chicago… how ’bout a reliable ride from Boston to Framingham…but Tampa to Orlando? From Buccaneerville to Mickey and Minnie’s house? Come on!!!!
I suppose, like a lot of pork things in Congress, the money could be resurrected in some other fashion down the road, but for now, chalk one up for the taxpayers. The Governor of Florida says “no” to a two billion dollar gift from Uncle Sam, which eventually would cost another three to five billion dollars, because that piece of Florida real estate from Tampa to Disney needs a high-speed rail about as much as John Kerry needs a new wind-surfing board.