Biden’s Infrastructure Plan Isn’t About Infrastructure. It’s About Paying Off Political Allies.

When everything’s infrastructure, nothing is.

by Peter Suderman

As it turns out, a huge chunk of President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan doesn’t have much to do with infrastructure.

This is not much of a surprise, given that Biden’s pandemic recovery bill had almost nothing to do with the pandemic. But in some ways, it also misses the larger point. Even many of the parts of the bill that are nominally about actual physical infrastructure aren’t really about infrastructure. They’re about shoveling money in the direction of Democratic political allies—mostly unions. And that explains a lot of the rest of the bill, too.

Republicans have been circulating a talking point about how only 7 percent of the $2.25 trillion proposal is actually related to infrastructure. This is somewhat ungenerous, as it only counts a narrow category of spending on roads, bridges, waterways, ports, and airports.

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