Thibeaux Lincecum
Libertarian for U.S. Congress in 2008

Maryland District Four

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Q. What state transportation projects are a priority and how should we pay for them?
Thibeaux LincecumDonna EdwardsPeter James
The Interstate Highway System was created to support rapid deployment of military resources in case of emergency. As national defense cannot be accomplished effectively by the states separately, this was an appropriate use of federal money. Enhancing the transportation system for non-defense purposes is better managed by state governments. As a Congressman, I would focus on lowering or eliminating federal taxes associated with transportation, such as the federal gas tax.In the 4th District the two transportation projects that we need to develop is a Purple Line that links Eastern Montgomery County and College Park in the north and metrorail across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge that connects National Airport, Andrews Air Force Base and National Harbor in the south. These projects will help ease traffic congestion by increasing the use and versatility of public transportation and will improve local air quality. To say nothing of the fact that building, maintaining and running these projects will create thousands of new jobs in our district.

In order to pay for these projects Congress needs to reconfigure its budget priorities. For too long funding for public transportation projects, healthcare and the environment have taken a back seat to an Iraq War boondoggle, tax cuts for the wealthy and subsidies for fossil fuel industries. We must invest in public transportation to improve quality of life, environmental stewardship and economic prosperity.

Other than bridges between Maryland and other States, there is no lawful Federal responsibility. The bulk of the gas tax should go to the states. Gas and property taxes are more than adequate to fund these projects.

A Congressperson should have no more ability to decide which projects get funding than any other citizen of Maryland. State and local elected officials should decide.

If we are still shorton funds, then Congress should issue money directly from the treasury and make interest-free loans to the states for such infrastructure projects. Such loans should be proportioned to the states based on population. This would mean that all public infrastructure would cost roughly half of what it does now. This proposal, known as the Sovereignty proposal, has been signed by over 3000 local governments.

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