President Obama will bring his jobs pitch to Cincinnati Sept. 22 to deliver remarks at the crumbling Brent Spence Bridge and highlight the need to invest in infrastructure and pass the American Jobs Act.
The bridge, which opened in 1963, is one the busiest trucking routes in the country but has been deemed “functionally obsolete.” It also just so happens to link House Speaker John Boehner’s home state of Ohio to Kentucky, the home of Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.
The president highlighted the bridge in his address to Congress last week, touting it as a project that could help put unemployed construction workers back on the job. However, there are currently no approved plans to repair or replace the Brent Spence bridge so it is unlikely that immediate federal money would be used to fix the decaying bridge. Construction is tentatively scheduled to begin in 2014.
“If Congress passes the American Jobs Act, we can put more Americans back to work while getting repairs like this one done,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters today, while insisting that the location of the president’s event was not at all political.
Carney did concede, however, that the decision to highlight this bridge was not a coincidence. “It’s not a coincidence in that it’s a bridge that is one we can get to and highlight from the White House on a day trip that absolutely illustrates the problem we have with the infrastructure in this country — roads, bridges, and other forms of infrastructure,” he said.
This will be Obama’s second visit to Ohio to tout his jobs plan and his fourth stop outside of Washington. So far Obama’s campaign to sell the American Jobs Act has brought him only to critical swing states.