Thursday, June 09, 2005

Schweitzer on Amtrak

I've been ignoring this story for some time, but it's time we covered it here. If there's one issue that's foremost on the Governor's plate right now, it's President Bush's threat to Amtrak. Last week, Schweitzer attended a town hall meeting with (you'd never guess) Republican Congressman Denny Rehberg and the chairman of Amtrak, David Laney, and the three of them blasted the Bush administration for cutting Amtrak's funding. Laney and Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta traded barbs, each accusing the other of lying about facts relating to Amtrak.

Me, I'm divided on this issue. It's common knowledge that Amtrak is poorly run and often breaks down and that it loses money for the Federal government. That said, it seems like Bush is trying to isolate the Western states like Montana that rely most on Amtrak for long-distance travel, and that's not a good thing. In any case, Schweitzer's taken his stand against the President yet again, and I like to see him go after the Administration that I hope he will personally challenge in 2008.


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