Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) voted for over $120 billion to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan, funds that were used to construct and repair schools, roads, bridges, and other critical infrastructure.
Now, Cantor is opposing President Obama’s proposal to spend $30 billion to modernize 35,000 American schools. Reuters hasthe story:
U.S. House Republican Leader Eric Cantor said on Monday he will not support President Barack Obama’s proposal to renovate U.S. schools as part of the administration’s bill to spur job growth.
He added that Obama should focus instead on cutting federal regulations that he says kill U.S. jobs…
The president’s proposal is a modest effort. The total maintenance and repair backlog at U.S. schools is estimated at $270 billion to $500 billion. While the funding Obama is proposing is fully offset, Cantor voted to build schools in Iraq and Afghanistan with deficit spending.
Construction and building projects generally create about 10,000 jobs per billion spent. At a time of high unemployment, the funding that Cantor opposes would create about 300,000 jobs. Economist Jared Berstein explains that funding to modernize schools is “a smart way to get a lot of people who really need jobs back to work, fix a critical part of our institutional infrastructure, save energy costs, provide kids with a better, healthier learning environment, and do so in way that everyone can see and feel good about each morning when they drop their kids at school.”