2016 Presidential Candidates: Infrastructure

A reliable infrastructure is the lynchpin of our daily lives and essential for an economy to thrive – from the roads, railways, waterways, and aviation systems that move people and freight to the telecommunications structures that make communications possible.



Hillary Clinton (D)

"First we have to build an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top. That means we need new jobs, good jobs with rising incomes. I want us to invest in you. I want us to invest in your future. That means jobs in infrastructure and advanced manufacturing, innovation and technology, clean renewable energy and small business because most of the new jobs will come from small business." (Clinton; September 26, 2016)

"So starting on Day One, we will work with both parties to pass the biggest investment in new, good-paying jobs since World War II. We will put Americans to work building and modernizing our roads, our bridges, our tunnels, our railways, our ports, our airports. We are way overdue for this, my friends. We are living off the investments that were made by our parents’ and grandparents’ generations. We will also help cities like Detroit and Flint connect underserved neighborhoods to opportunity, expanding affordable housing, and we will repair schools and failing water systems as well. You know, I happen to think we should be ambitious: while we’re at it, let’s connect every household in America to broadband by the year 2020. It’s astonishing to me how many places in America, not way, way far away from cities, but in cities and near cities that don’t have access to broadband. And that disadvantages kids who are asked to do homework using the internet. 5 million of them live in homes without access to the internet. So you talk about an achievement gap, it starts right there." (Clinton; August 11, 2016

"And here’s something that you don’t always hear enough of from Democrats: a big part of our plan will be unleashing the power of the private sector to create more jobs at higher pay. And that means for us, creating an infrastructure bank to get private funds off the sidelines and complement our private investments. $25 billion in government seed funding could unlock more than $250 billion and really get our country moving on our infrastructure plans. And we’re going to invest $10 billion in what we’re calling “Make it in America” partnerships to support American manufacturing and recommit to scientific research that can create entire new industries." (Clinton; August 11, 2016)

"In my first 100 days as president, I will work with both parties to pass a comprehensive plan to create the next generation of good jobs. Now the heart of my plan will be the biggest investment in American infrastructure in decades, including establishing an infrastructure bank that will bring private sector dollars off the sidelines and put them to work there. " (Clinton, 2016)
“… This wall would cost, oh, at least $25 billion. That is enough to build 16 Golden Gate Bridges or 1,500 new elementary schools. It is enough to send more than 300,000 veterans to college—or install enough renewable energy to power 5 million homes. We sure could help a lot of hardworking Americans if we took that money and invested it here, and made a real difference in the lives and the jobs and the schools and the opportunities that Americans have.” (Clinton, 2016)
"In America, we build great things together—from the transcontinental railroad to the interstate highway system to the Hoover Dam. But today, our investments in infrastructure are roughly half what they were 35 years ago. That’s why Hillary Clinton has announced a $275 billion, five-year plan to rebuild our infrastructure—and put Americans to work in the process. She’ll work to pass her infrastructure plan in her first 100 days of office, as part of a comprehensive agenda to create the next generation of good-paying jobs. As president, Hillary will: Repair and expand our roads and bridges. Hillary will make smart investments to improve our roads, reduce congestion, and slash the “pothole tax” that drivers silently pay each and every day. Lower transportation costs and unlock economic opportunity by expanding public transit options. Hillary will encourage local governments to work with low-income communities to ensure unemployed and underemployed Americans are connected to good jobs. Connect all Americans to the internet. Hillary will work to ensure that by 2020, 100 percent of households in America will have access to affordable broadband. She will also invest new resources in bringing free Wi-Fi to public buildings and public transportation. Invest in building world-class American airports and modernize our national airspace system. These investments will reduce carbon emissions and save travelers and airlines an estimated $100 billion in avoided delays over the next 15 years. Build energy infrastructure for the 21st century. We can unlock America’s clean energy potential by modernizing infrastructure like dams, levees, and wastewater systems—saving billions of gallons in clean drinking water and generating clean energy." (Clinton, 2016)

From Hillary Clinton's Plan for a Vibrant Rural America:  Spurring investment to power the rural economy. Small and medium sized businesses power the rural economy but many are being held back by inadequate infrastructure, poor access to credit and capital, and insufficient incentives to invest. To unleash the potential of America's rural businesses, farms, and ranches – and create jobs and grow wages for working Americans – Clinton will...create a national infrastructure bank and invest in infrastructure to improve the country's rural transportation, water, and broadband infrastructure so that it meets the demands of our modernizing industries and creates jobs in rural America. Crucially, Clinton will focus on increasing access and adoption of high-speed broadband so that rural small businesses can better connect to the global economy, farmers and ranchers can benefit from agricultural technology, and students can benefit from distance learning.  (Clinton, 2015)



Donald Trump (R)

"Oh, so much, so much. And by the way, it’s really not enough to rebuild the infrastructure, but we need our roads, we need our highways, but we need them built, and this is so important, we need them built very rapidly. We need them built now. The roads are a disaster. You know, the trucks, these big trucking companies, they’re losing their trucks because of the potholes and the problems and the roads. We need infrastructure, and it’s got to be given out right. I’ll give you an example. The old Post Office, which I’m building on Pennsylvania Avenue… It’s ahead of schedule by a year, and it’s under budget. And it’s much better than ever anticipated. In other words, I went even higher end. It’s going to be one of the great hotels of the world. But I’m under budget and I’m ahead of schedule. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could spend money like that?" (Trump; August 11, 2016)
"The national debt has doubled. And you know the bad part about that? You think if the national debt has doubled, our infrastructure would be great, our country would be in great shape. We’d have beautiful roads, beautiful highways. You see where like 50 percent of the bridges are in danger in this country. And the roadways are a mess. I have a friend, he’s in the trucking business. He said, you know, for years, he had no problem. Now he buys these big, beautiful trucks, and the wheels get wiped out because of the potholes on the highways and things that he never had. So, you think with all of that doubling of the national debt, you’d really think that we’d be in good shape from the infrastructure standpoint, right? We’re not. We’re in very bad shape." (Trump, 2016)
"When we reform our tax, trade, energy and regulatory policies, we will open a new chapter in American Prosperity. We can use this new wealth to rebuild our military and our infrastructure." (Trump, 2016)
"But we are going to look boldly into the future. We will build the next generation of roads, bridges, railways, tunnels, sea ports and airports that our country deserves. American cars will travel the roads, American planes will connect our cities, and American ships will patrol the seas. American steel will send new skyscrapers soaring. We will put new American metal into the spine of this nation." (Trump, 2016)
“President Obama has almost doubled our national debt to more than 19 trillion dollars and growing. And yet, what do we have to show for it? Our roads and bridges are falling apart, our airports are third-world condition, and 43 million Americans are on food stamps." (Trump, 2016)

"Rebuild the country’s infrastructure.  Nobody can do that like me. Believe me. It will be done on time, on budget, way below cost, way below what anyone ever thought.  I look at the roads being built all over the country, and I say I can build those things for one-third. What they do is unbelievable, how bad...So we have to rebuild our infrastructure, our bridges, our roadways, our airports. You come into La Guardia Airport, it’s like we’re in a third world country. You look at the patches and the 40-year-old floor. They throw down asphalt, and they throw.  You look at these airports, we are like a third world country. And I come in from China and I come in from Qatar and I come in from different places, and they have the most incredible airports in the world. You come to back to this country and you have LAX, disaster. You have all of these disastrous airports. We have to rebuild our infrastructure." (Trump, 2015)

"But we are going to look boldly into the future. We will build the next generation of roads, bridges, railways, tunnels, sea ports and airports that our country deserves. American cars will travel the roads, American planes will connect our cities, and American ships will patrol the seas. American steel will send new skyscrapers soaring. We will put new American metal into the spine of this nation." (Trump, 2016)



Gary Johnson (L)

Not available.