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Rep. John Boehner: Widen highways for "American families" (updated)

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on January 12th, 2009 at 4:07 pm

[Via Paul Dorn's Bike Commute Tips Blog]

Rep. John Boehner thinks
Americans don't want
spending on bike paths.
-Watch video below-

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) weighed in on Obama's big economic stimulus bill during an interview on the CBS News show "Face the Nation" (his comments were also picked up by TheHill.com).

Saying that the stimulus must happen quickly and in a "responsible way" he shared his thoughts on the infrastructure component of the bill (emphasis mine):

"I think there’s a place for infrastructure, but what kind of infrastructure? Infrastructure to widen highways, to ease congestion for American families? Is it to build some buildings that are necessary?...But if we’re talking about beautification projects, or we’re talking about bike paths, Americans are not going to look very kindly on this."

Watch the video here:

I'm not sure what the link is between "American famillies" and widening highways, but I bet Rep. Boehner would be surprised to know that a growing number of "American families" go by bike (and many more would do so if they had safe "bike paths" available).

"American families" on a
"bike path" in Portland.
(Photo © J. Maus)

This is a familiar tone for Boehner. You might remember when he took a pot-shot at the Bike Commuter Act. He likened it to a piece of pork during a speech against the Energy Bill on the House floor in December of 2007 (the Bike Commuter Act ended up failing in the Senate that time around). Listen to him laughing about it here:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

With stimulus bill talks heating up and with the transportation re-authorization coming this year, you can bet Rep. Boehner will be doing all he can to make sure the status quo is preserved...in the name of "American families" of course.

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Comments
  • brian January 12, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    Jonathan,
    Bonhner is calling us fat, "widen highways for American families". He obviousley realizes we are in the midst of an obesity epidemic, but seems to be clueless as to how to solve it, ie bike paths.

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  • Brad Ross January 12, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    I'm all for widening highways. Hell, my ars is so wide right now I barely fit in a bike lane.

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  • ambrown January 12, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    It's so frustrating seeing Republicans picking up on this "biking thing" as a piece of cultural warfare. Biking should be for everybody! I think biking advocates, in gearing up for this summer/fall's reauthorization of the transit bill, should think seriously about how best to sell biking to the public/congress that's going to vote for how this stimulus bill is spent. Senate Republicans sure seem to have already decided where they stand: Tom Coburn (R-OK) called a fantastic bike center in Minneapolis a giant piece of pork spending despite its overwhelming use:

    http://www.startribune.com/local/36088634.html

    As frustrating as this is, it was nice to read today's article in the NYT about our lovely congressmen Earl.

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  • Bjorn January 12, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    It seems very odd in the wake of all the news around Portland's burgeoning bike economy to hear that a rep. from Ohio is slagging bikes. Ohio is the home to Huffy bikes, and although no longer made in the US huffy is the #1 bike brand in the US. Their headquarters continues to be in Ohio, although I am not sure if it is in his district.

    Bjorn

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  • chuck January 12, 2009 at 4:48 pm

    heh, Boehner...

    what? someone had to do it.

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  • Joe January 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    waiting for something like this for along time!

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  • Donna January 12, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    Jonathan - remember that gentleman who did that piece on bike commuting for the 700 Club a while back? I'm wondering if he can speak a language that Rep. Boehner can comprehend...

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  • dan Kearl January 12, 2009 at 7:02 pm

    Boehner is a ***** who totally represents the republican party. We should be sending him campaign contributions! Palin/Boehner in 2012. These people are a joke and hopefully will continue to represent the 20% of the country who just doesn't get it.

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  • joeb January 12, 2009 at 7:09 pm

    Hey I think Boehner is exactly qualified to run for CEO of General Motors. He knows exactly what American's want and it sure ain't some sissified gas sipping compact. I'm pretty tired of national and corporate leaders completely missing the boat and trying to sell me something I totally don't want.

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  • Hanmade January 12, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    Another reason I moved out of Ohio so many years ago, I just needed to get away from people like him!

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  • Hart January 12, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    Yeah, this guy's a ***** alright.

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  • Coyote January 12, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    Boehner is a ****. He is among the worst of the worst.

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  • Tom January 12, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    I think the term "bike paths" should be changed to "bike roads." They are our roads and I think the term would sit a bit heftier in the minds of these type of people. Who's with me?

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  • John Peterson January 12, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    Pay no mind Boehner is a republican--they don't really matter anymore...

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  • John January 12, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    Because nothing says family values louder than bigger highways!

    Think of the children.

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  • Kevin Wagoner January 12, 2009 at 8:41 pm

    I grew up in a small town in Ohio. I don't recall any families there asking for widening highways.

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  • r January 12, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    the quote was reprinted on thehill.com, but the source was an appearance on "face the nation"
    http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4712899n
    watch the man's fingertips

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  • joe January 12, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    it is good to know the enemy.

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  • tonyt January 12, 2009 at 9:20 pm

    Jonathan, you picked a particularly benign picture of Mr. Creepmeister Tanning Bed Boehner.

    He's the guy who was the bagman for the tobacco lobbyists, handing out checks, literally, on the House floor in the 1990s.

    Whaddya want to bet that there are some oil/car industry lobbyists padding his pockets.

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  • Lacorota January 12, 2009 at 10:12 pm

    Seems the GOP is still enjoying the all-night party fueled by cheap petroleum, expensive wars, and inefficient SUV's.
    Remember the Russian proverb: "THE FISH ROTS FROM THE HEAD BACK."

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  • beth h January 12, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    I guess my family's not American anymore.

    ..::sigh::..

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  • Hart January 12, 2009 at 10:22 pm

    Boner(R) looks like he's wearing guy-liner in the photo atop the page. Perhaps Guilianni gave him some makeup tips.

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  • Brian January 12, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    Join my Facebook group:
    I bet I can find 1 Million American families who want big beautiful bike paths.

    http://www.facebook.com/groups/edit.php?gid=129767400136#/group.php?gid=129767400136

    Be a warrior in the war on obesity. Ride a bike.

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  • Matt Kelly January 12, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    Hanmade,
    I too am from Ohio and I wrote the leader a sensible email including reasons why I'm proud to be from Ohio (including the bike path project that attempts to connect Cincinnati with Cleveland. Some sections of this path are subpar, but I think the idea is great). I suggest you do the same.

    asktheleader@mail.house.gov

    If you or others act like an ass, then you make my email less effective (i know, i know), so please write an email that you'd listen to if you were on the other side of the argument.

    Matt Kelly

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  • Matt Kelly January 12, 2009 at 11:31 pm

    forgot to mention that the entire airline industry came from two brothers who ran a bike shop in dayton, ohio. that whole "first in flight" vs. "birthplace of aviation" rivalry comes down to bragging rights about two bike shop owners. bikes and innovation...

    (not that airline travel is not without problems...)

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  • Spencer Boomhower January 13, 2009 at 12:00 am

    There was a presentation on traffic-calming a while back which, among other things suggested that while most people think widening roads will make them safer, it turns out the opposite is true. Widening roads induces faster driving because, when presented with a wide-open expanse of asphalt, drivers feel safer going faster. This causes more crashes, more injuries, and more pollution, all of which harm Americans. And their families.

    Why does Rep. Boehner hate American families?

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  • Hart January 13, 2009 at 2:22 am

    Maybe John the Boner can join Joe the Plumber in Gaza where they can both argue for why Israel has the right to kill Palestinians with white phosphorus.

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  • Patrick January 13, 2009 at 6:46 am

    Brian (#23), I'd be more likely to join your Facebook group if you didn't insist on mixing useful advocacy (showing broad support for bike facilities) with juvenile humor (the congressman's name is pronounced "BAY-ner", not "Bone-er" as you put on the Facebook site.

    As Matt mentioned above, calling the guy an ass and making fun of his name won't be likely to shift his opinions, those of his colleagues in Congress, or make the bike community look good.

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  • peejay January 13, 2009 at 7:28 am

    Hey, sometimes an ass is just an ass!

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  • Jonathan Maus (Editor) January 13, 2009 at 9:29 am

    "As Matt mentioned above, calling the guy an ass and making fun of his name won't be likely to shift his opinions, those of his colleagues in Congress, or make the bike community look good."

    thanks for saying that Patrick. I agree folks, I have tried to edit some of these comments, but it's hard to keep up.

    And yes, his last name is pronounced BAY-ner and if you really want to change the world, I've found that it usually works better to start from a position of respect.

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  • K'Tesh January 13, 2009 at 9:29 am

    Just like the Republicans to deny that there is an epidemic of obesity, and that our environment (and economy) is falling apart, and suggest that a fix is to continue to bow to foreign oil...

    All hail OPEC!!!
    OPEC is Freedom!

    F*** OPEC!

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  • Liz January 13, 2009 at 9:38 am

    I wrote him a letter telling him about my family and our feelings.

    It took as much time as commenting on this board for people who agree with me.

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  • Andrew H January 13, 2009 at 9:44 am

    You can post a comment with the video on Boehner's YouTube channel:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RW_B7Q2n29M&feature=channel_page

    It'd be nice for him to be reminded that families live in neighborhoods, not on freeways. And that communities that have invested in bike paths and other local amenities are far more family-friendly than those that raze the land to serve the auto.

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  • Jeremy January 13, 2009 at 9:56 am

    we can bark all we want, but at the end of the day the dog that gets the best seat on the couch is the dog that sets the best example. behave in a manner that doesn't encourage wider freeways, thereby providing data that supports the inverse argument. true, a longer, less-direct approach, but perhaps a more solid foundation for the counter-argument.

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  • Hart January 13, 2009 at 11:50 am

    I'm tired of progressives constantly being told they have to be the ones to treat bigoted, oil-hungry republicans with respect in order to change the world.

    Sometimes a little social ridicule is required to let a person know their actions or attitude are not tolerated.

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  • Jonathan Maus (Editor) January 13, 2009 at 11:56 am

    "I'm tired of progressives constantly being told they have to be the ones to treat bigoted, oil-hungry republicans with respect in order to change the world.

    Sometimes a little social ridicule is required to let a person know their actions or attitude are not tolerated."

    I hear you Hart... and I agree to some extent. It's just hard from an editorial perspective to let insults stand on this site....no matter who they're pointed at.

    Because when the tables are turned, people will write me and say, "Hey! why do you let insults at so-and-so stand while you edit out insults at so-and-so. You're not being fair!"

    Also, I think one of the great lessons for America with Obama was that he maintained his respect and composure throughout the campaign.

    ridicule is tricky to do well. there are risks in coming off as being no better than the folks you're trying to poke fun at.

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  • steve January 13, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    Respect and composure? Which campaign were you watching?

    Boehner is a paid employee. Write all the feel good, persuasive letters you want. Until you are greasing his pockets with more cash than the next guy, he will have a deaf ear and a blind eye. Just like Obama.

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  • jami January 13, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Be careful with this issue, folks. This is Republican divisive genius at work. There are indeed families in rural areas who still need safe highways. They grow our food (for example) and it is legitimate for them to live in the middle of nowhere.

    What Boehner is doing is trying to paint families who live in urban areas who would prefer safe streets with slower traffic as unAmerican, turning us against rural families who still need good highways and vice versa.

    It never ceases to amaze me how astoundingly good Republicans are at saying city people are not real Americans without coming right out and saying it.

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  • jami January 13, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    Be careful with this issue, folks. This is Republican divisive genius at work. There are indeed families in rural areas who still need safe highways. They grow our food (for example) and it is legitimate for them to live in the middle of nowhere.

    What Boehner is doing is trying to paint families who live in urban areas who would prefer safe streets with slower traffic as unAmerican, turning us against rural families who still need good highways and vice versa.

    It never ceases to amaze me how astoundingly good Republicans are at saying city people are not real Americans without coming right out and saying it, though they do let it slip directly on occasion.

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  • wsbob January 13, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    There's a summary of House Minority Leader John Boehner's positions at ontheissues.org.

    John Boehner on the issues

    In their words, "John Boehner is a Hard-Core Conservative.". At that site, check out his position on 'energy and oil' and 'environment'.

    Having been a big time dude as House Majority Leader after Tom Delay compromised himself, and even now, as House Minority Leader, perhaps he imagines saying things like this will strengthen his political party.

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  • Hart January 13, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    "ridicule is tricky to do well. there are risks in coming off as being no better than the folks you're trying to poke fun at."

    Agreed. It's fun to poke fun of his name on the internet, but I know we all appreciate that you're running something far more respectable than the average flame war forum here.

    Boehner probably will never be convinced cycling is the future by being called names, though he's not likely to be convinced period. Leading his constituents by example is obviously the most prudent route to a cross-class bike culture.

    So when I say that Boehner is the poster boy for oil-lust and should be looked down upon for perpetuating pollution and more environmental destruction, I'm judging him purely on the content of his character, and not upon the way his name looks.

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  • Aaron January 13, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    (my letter to House Minority Leader)
    Mr. Boehner;
    I am deeply disturbed by your consistent outspoken opinions stating that infrastructure which favors the car is important while infrastructure for bicycle users is not worthwhile. This is not a black & white issue to pit one side against the other.
    There are rural populations such as farmers and truckers which bring food and supplies across the country. These people need safe roads to support the populations who depend on them.
    There are also populations in small towns and large cities who live within 10 miles of their destinations and would prefer riding a bicycle (or taking a bus) to get around. These people are doing the country a great service by reducing congestion, reducing dependence on Saudi Arabia (and Russia, and Venezuala) while also reducing the cost of maintaining roads.
    I have spoken with many traffic planners and studies conducted by professionals prove that wider roads incite more dangerous driving and lead to more highway deaths.
    Please reconsider your opinion on transportation.

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  • Joe January 13, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    Thank You Aaron!

    wow
    There are also populations in small towns and large cities who live within 10 miles of their destinations and would prefer riding a bicycle (or taking a bus) to get around. These people are doing the country a great service by reducing congestion, reducing dependence on Saudi Arabia (and Russia, and Venezuala) while also reducing the cost of maintaining roads.

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  • Brad January 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm

    Boehner will matter as long as Obama, Lieberman, and all the other Democratic sissies keep listening and bending to his ridiculous verbal pablum.

    As it stands, Obama keeps giving him an ear so we have to keep listening.

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  • Hart January 13, 2009 at 11:01 pm

    Obama listens because it' his job. You don't have to listen to Boehner. You don't have to put your ear anywhere near a Boehner.

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  • peejay January 14, 2009 at 7:32 am

    jami @ 39 (and again @ 40):

    You make a good point, but I would argue that the farmers in rural communities have had the roads they need for some time, and any widening is done for the benefit of the crappy housing developers who are intent on replacing the farmlands with ex-urban developments that are obscenely far from the jobs that its intended residents work at. The highways are all about making a long daily commute more palatable for these new residents, not for the sake of the farmers. However, such subtlety gets lost on Boehner's intended audience.

    And Jonathan, all due respect, but this guy is an ass, and I feel we should be comfortable calling him that. He's not going to change his viewpoint as a result of a few respectful emails, or any facebook groups. The way to deal with a guy like this isn't reasoned discourse, it's at the polls, when the good citizens of Ohio relieve him of his duties.

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  • peejay January 14, 2009 at 7:38 am

    Brad:

    You got that right! Although, please don't call Lieberman a Democrat. The Democrats need to stop being so deferential to the minority party and start doing the job they were elected to do, or we will have to choose better Demorats through the primary process. The Republicans will have to finish their self-destruction and someday form a new, sane party, one that might give us an actual choice at the ballot box.

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  • Brian January 14, 2009 at 11:08 am

    Patrick (#28),
    You say tu-ma-da, I say toe-ma-toe. You say puh-ta-da, I say pot-a-toe. I know a boner when I see one.

    Come-on, this guy doesn't even take himself seriously:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-_1_WxExiM&feature=related

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  • [...] 14, 2009 by johnwirtz I found this interesting link on BikePortland.org: Rep. John Boehner: Widen highways for “American families” (updated) House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) weighed in on Obama’s big economic stimulus bill during [...]

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  • Dan Kaufman January 14, 2009 at 10:49 pm

    I cut down the video to just the infrastructure section and posted to YouTube:
    http://tinyurl.com/8qj676

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  • Republican January 15, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    "...and suggest that a fix is to continue to bow to foreign oil..."

    That's a slanderous lie! We firmly believe the best solution to reliance on foreign oil is massive domestic drilling.

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  • geezer January 16, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    peejay @ 47 Yes, if only someone in Connecticut could have upset Joe Lieberman in the primary...

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  • Lois Moss January 16, 2009 at 9:07 pm

    As a fellow Ohioan, I am embarrassed, frustrated and angry. This was faxed to numerous congressional offices and sent to 4500 cyclists' e-mails:

    House Minority Leader Is Anti-Bicycle and Against People Who Walk

    Each year, the bicycle/pedestrian community gathers in Washington DC to share ideas and to speak with our Federal elected officials. A number of citizens from Ohio have made this trek and have tried for years to get an appointment with someone from Congressman Boehner’s office. Neither the Congressman nor his staff has agreed to meet with their fellow Ohioans and constituents. Because he is the House Minority Leader, Representative Boehner is the second highest-ranking member of the U.S. Congress and every American who walks or rides a bicycle is affected by his opinions.

    On Sunday’s Meet the Press program, the Congressman’s anti-bicycle and anti-pedestrian stance became more public when he said "I think there's a place for infrastructure. But what kind of infrastructure? Infrastructure to widen highways to ease congestion for American families? But if we're talking about beautification projects or we're talking about bike paths, Americans are not going to look very kindly on this."

    Apparently, the congressman believes urban sprawl is the answer. In his mind smog, pollution and asthma must be good things. In addition, he apparently:

    - Ignores the numerous studies documenting that the overwhelming majority of Americans favor more bike paths

    - Is ignorant of the obesity epidemic that causes diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and dozens of other chronic illnesses which are killing us and crippling our healthcare system

    - Does not understand that bicycling, walking and other non-automobile methods are valid transportation for people

    - Cares nothing about the 33% of Americans who do not drive due to age, personal circumstances, physical impairment or poverty

    - Is not aware of the significant economic benefit that walkable / bikeable neighborhoods create or that more people walking and biking foster safer, more vibrant communities

    - Fails to appreciate that the Cincinnati/Dayton area benefits from over 200 miles of multi-use paths that are shared by cyclists, walkers, joggers, families, seniors and others

    - Is unaware that two of the country’s Top 100 bicycle retailers are located in Cincinnati/Dayton

    - Does not know that the Cincinnati/Dayton area is home of Ohio’s two largest bicycle clubs and numerous walking groups

    - Does not care that the Ohio Bicycle Federation is headquartered in Dayton

    Whether you are a seasoned bicycle commuter who doesn’t use bike paths or an occasional rider who is intimidated by riding on streets, anyone who rides a bicycle or walks should take issue with his comments, the insulting tone in his voice and his anti-bicycle / anti-pedestrian stance. His stance endangers not just bike paths, but also other projects such as crosswalk improvements, better signage, new striping and sharrows, education programs, bicycle parking improvements and multi-use paths.

    With massive transportation and roadway projects expected soon, we need to remind our elected officials that streets, transportation systems and infrastructure should include ALL users, not only cars and trucks.

    The most effective communication tool in this case is the fax machine (they are inundated by e-mails and sending regular mail can take weeks to clear security). You can send a detailed letter or you can send a simple handwritten note such as “I Walk and I Vote!” Here are the congressman’s fax numbers:
    202-225-0704 Washington DC office
    513-779-5315 Local office #1
    937-339-1878 Local office #2

    To send a message to any other elected official, their contact info can be found on http://www.votesmart.org. Please also consider forwarding this e-mail to people you care about who ride a bicycle or walk.

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  • Glen January 26, 2009 at 4:13 am

    I'm sure i will be a target for this but I agree.
    Education would be much more helpful in the long run. Get it out there that biking/walking/being active is healthier and can be a world of fun. Get it through to people that bikes have a right to be on a road, and help teach drivers how to react to cyclists.
    Also teach more cyclists how to be safer and respectful, what to do in emergencies and ways they can improve cycling in their own communities.

    Lets give communities a chance to stand up on their own if they really want things to get better. Not just for them self but for others and the future.

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  • [...] January 26, 2009 · Filed under Cycling, News Rep. John Boehner: Widen highways for “American families” (updated) [...]

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  • michael wells January 26, 2009 at 7:25 am

    This out tune Bush look-a-like buffoon is living in the Dark Ages obviously. I also faxed the above numbers with a less insulting demeanor. How did this guy ever get re-elected? I thought this last election cleaned house with his type. He won't last the next election with such continued erroneous rhetoric, that is a given!

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  • lowell January 26, 2009 at 11:30 am

    I like the comment about how are we perceived by the public. Are we seen as just bunch of sporto's playing on our toys, or is this about something essential to America's future? That's what all of us need to be working on.

    We should thank this guy. We know where he stands. We should put him in our sights. Good hunting!

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  • Johnson January 27, 2009 at 5:52 am

    OK really folks? In the time it took you to comment here you could have written a short letter to the guy. As I did. Get on it. Commenting here is preaching to the mute choir. Props to those who have already done so. Noogies to those who havn't...

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  • michael wells January 27, 2009 at 10:15 am

    President Obama's administration will undoubtedly educate uninformed's like this or he will be kicked to the curb as we ride by on our bikes. His title really says it all(Minority)House leader. As long as he stays in the minority we will be ok, LOL.

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  • Jeff January 28, 2009 at 4:02 am

    Typical case of soundbite taken out of context. Are all of you pissed at him because he is telling you all the truth and you want to cry like little babies? The truth is in this economy people want the Govt to spend LESS money. I agree with Glenn educate drivers and cyclists about sharing the road is a better plan than spending money our country does not have.

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  • Dan Kaufman January 28, 2009 at 9:02 am

    Context is good, Jeff, so maybe you should watch it again and hear that John Boehner is perfectly prepared to borrow and spend.

    Boehner wants to make sure it's on projects like widening highways.

    Many of us around here believe that our transportation infrastructure (subsidized for and dominated by single occupancy motorcars) helped get us into the economic mess we're in now.

    If you are so concerned about govt spending why is it not obvious how costly the subsidization of the motorized lifestyle is in terms of basic infrastructure cost, defense of fuel supply lines, pollution, trade imbalance, and national obesity.

    Before you even use it as an argument, Jeff, gasoline taxes only cover a fraction (1/3) of the infrastructure costs for roads and none of the externalized costs.

    Education about sharing the road is great (also not free) but our highways are built for the maximum benefit of motor vehicles (to the detriment of all other users).

    Changing this paradigm won't be free but it will quickly pay dividends. This is proven in cities across the world that have invested even small amounts on bicycle and pedestrian facilities.

    It's great to have dissenting opinion, Jeff. But before you call folks babies maybe you should pull your argument from a better source than the failed and insincere hyperbole of Rush Limbaugh and friends.

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  • Donna January 28, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    Dan's right about the spending, Jeff. Boehner's totally willing to spend money we don't actually have - just so long as it's on the projects he believes are important.

    Frankly, I'd like to see an end to deficit spending. I personally don't believe these make-work projects are going to save the economy. That said, I know I am very much in the minority. As people seem to be hell-bent on spend, spend, spend, I'd rather see some spending to achieve some balance in the transportation infrastructure.

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  • Jeff January 29, 2009 at 3:25 am

    I appreciate the comments. I am just trying to get some on here to have a reality check. The majority of people do not want to see money spent on bike paths at this time because of the economy. It is a cold hard fact. Calling someone an idiot and suggesting he be hunted down and shot is not going to help the cause. That's all.

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  • michael wells January 29, 2009 at 6:26 am

    To educate the mutltitude of drivers on road safety laws and courtesy falls upon the majority of deaf ears. The League of American Cylists have been lobbying and stressing this point for years, but has the nationwide injury/death numbers decreased over last 5 years? Separate lanes or pathways always have and always will be the proper/safer method! Allocating funds for this cause rests easy on my mind versus bailing out the likes of AIG and other poorly managed companies. The stimulus $$ is there and it will be spent so lets jump on this opportunity. By the way have all the bloggers here written Boehner?

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  • Donna January 29, 2009 at 7:40 am

    Here's some more cold, hard reality, Jeff - Boehner's just as bad with his proposals of spending the GDP of our grandchildren and our great grandchildren (which is what this "stimulus" actually is) on widening freeways. It's every bit as destructive as spending it on bike paths. Either way, we are consuming the resources of future generations.

    The majority of people don't want bike paths? Well, the majority of people want to spend this country into oblivion when we don't even have the money to do it. Get back to me when the majority of people have a sensible thought in their brains about this exciting, new Depression.

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  • HaplyCarlessDave January 29, 2009 at 4:10 pm

    The faster we frenetically use up the earth's resources, the sooner we run out. The use of bikes conserves resourses to a degree few things can match.
    As for boner- peughh! he's an ignoramous that probably got in there fraudulentl- people are wising up fast. He'll either be history, or get busted for election fixing-- I'm sure there's many other skeletons in his closet, too! He'll be history in that case too. Until then, of course it's like trying to deal with a little kid....
    BCDave

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  • Jeff January 29, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    Donna I agree with you on the majority of people not having sense. The majority voted for Obama. And the majority of those who didn't, voted for McCain. That leaves the rest who were sensible and voted for real Change. I hope this stimulus bill goes down in flames because it is bad. Bike paths are something that should be left up to the local governmentts to decide and fund. Personally I commute on my bike mostly and as such prefer to use roads mostly. The safest roads for most cyclists are wide roads with wide shoulders that allow cars and cyclists to peacefully coexist. I think bike paths (mups) are great if you do not mind dodging joggers, dogs, kids, strollers, inline skaters, pedestrians walking 3 or 4 wide, and cars pulling in and out of parking lots. If you as a cyclist want more mups then do some fund raising and petition your local government and businesses. That is where the debate belongs.

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  • Dan Kaufman January 30, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Jeff, who are you to tell us where the debate belongs?

    Go ahead and long for the days of Herbert Hoover or even fantasize about a libertarian utopia. While you do that, the Federal govt is going to spend our money. We have every right to influence that decision.

    I, for one, would rather see billions dumped into MUPs (that give plenty of room for bikes and pedestrians to travel comfortably) than put into the pockets of Merrill Lynch executives - see: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/378a38d4-e814-11dd-b2a5-0000779fd2ac.html?nclick_check=1

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  • Jeff January 31, 2009 at 4:51 am

    And I am exercising my right to influence the Feds to make the decision to NOT spend the money we do not have. The problem with the politicians today is they seem to have forgotten history and how FDR's New Deal actually prolonged the depression. I see the same thing happening all over again. If this bailout is so important, then why is the vast majority being spent after 2009?
    http://readthestimulus.org/
    The point of saying the debate belongs locally is because the local governments are more in touch than the Feds. Also if so many folks want bile paths then surely they will be willing to pony up and pay for them, instead of relying on Big Brother to do it for them.

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  • Dan Kaufman January 31, 2009 at 12:42 pm

    Jeff, go ahead and exercise your rights. Unlike you, I would never presume to tell you otherwise.

    Also, it'd be interesting to discuss your Heritage Foundation sponsored revisionist history, Jeff. But, the real question is not should or if the Feds will spend money. The question is how.

    As it turns out, our govt succeeds at many projects like the National Freeway System, BPA, TVA, NASA, even small ones like Timberline Lodge.

    I'd love to see that kind muscle put behind a interstate bike/ped freeway system. Just imagine being able to commute to work on a bike freeway rather than a motor freeway or seeing retirees riding cross country on Federally subsidized roads rather than Driving Motorhomes on federally subsidized roads.

    BTW, there are very few 80-year-olds (or 8-year olds) who can bike across country on the current highway system. There are many, many, more who'd try it if they had safe pathways.

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  • Spencer Boomhower April 19, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I should probably just let this go, but today Rep. Boehner was on "This Week with George Stephanopoulos":

    "George, the idea that carbon dioxide is a carcinogen that is harmful to our environment is almost comical. Every time we exhale, we exhale carbon dioxide. Every cow in the world, you know, when they do what they do, you've got more carbon dioxide."

    http://abcnews.go.com/ThisWeek/Story?id=7373578&page=4

    Is this willful ignorance? Carcinogens cause cancer, and I'm pretty sure no one is suggesting CO2 causes cancer.

    And cows doing what they do would seem to be a coy reference to flatulence. That would be methane.

    Now, CO2 *is* an element that makes up the small percentage of our atmosphere that keeps heat from being reflected back into space. I think it's about .1% of our atmosphere, such a small percentage anyway that it is within our ability to mess with it by blasting a few million years worth of sequestered carbon up into the sky. The best available science has concluded that this could cause a destabilization of world climates that could cause a whole cascade of problems for humans. Even Exxon and the U.S. military have gotten behind this view.

    But CO2 as a carcinogen, and cow farts making CO2? Not really on the radar.

    There's a lot of smart Republicans out there. How do they feel about the fact that this is their leadership in the House?

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  • Bent Bloke April 20, 2009 at 9:12 am

    Apparently, Rep. Boehner doesn't know methane from Shinola. His whole argument stinks.

    C02 is poisonous (as well as a greenhouse gas), but it is not a carcinogen.

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  • Aaron November 1, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    Two ideas. 1) Get Jim Schneller to go after him on highway pork
    http://www.cyclelicio.us/2010/tea-party-bicycle-rider/
    2) Get O'Donnell to speak out against boehners

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  • spare_wheel November 1, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    "Until you are greasing his pockets with more cash than the next guy, he will have a deaf ear and a blind eye. Just like Obama."

    Word.

    The red and blue parties are bought and payed for.

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  • natalie portman November 2, 2010 at 12:17 am

    man, i love dan kaufman

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