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ACEC News / Fall Conference

October 29, 2020

Congressional Panel at Fall Conference Debates Infrastructure, Stimulus Prospects

A bipartisan panel of U.S. Representatives discussed the prospects for new stimulus legislation, an infrastructure package, climate change, and working across the aisle following the election and into 2021 at the virtual 2020 ACEC Fall Conference on Thursday.

Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL) said “partisanship has killed any chance of passing a stimulus bill this year,” but Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) said he was hopeful that Congress could pass “a series of stand-alone measures”

Maloney went on to say if the Democratic Party controls both the Presidency and the Congress after the election, “We will have a robust stimulus package in the new year and follow that up with an infrastructure package.”

Rep. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI) said passing infrastructure legislation “is one of the most important things we need to do,” adding that investments need to be made in resilient infrastructure and funding needs to be more widely distributed to smaller localities.

The lawmakers said that climate change will be a sticking point in any infrastructure negotiations, with Davis saying that the United States is already the world leader in reducing greenhouse gases and any new legislation must not be so radical that it damages the economy.

“If the Democrats win,” Maloney countered, “there will be very significant climate provisions.”

Maloney and Plaskett also supported the return of Member Items—commonly known as earmarks—”in a reformed and improved way. They allow members of Congress to actually deliver infrastructure projects locally.”   

On bipartisanship, Davis said, “We need to work for solutions rather than play to the partisan ends of the political spectrum.”

In response, Plaskett said of the Democratic majority in the House, “I don’t see us veering to the left. The majority of legislators are center/left or center/right…and are willing to partner with members across the aisle.”

All comments to blog posts will be moderated by ACEC staff.


October 29, 2020



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