ATLANTA — The Democratic Party of Georgia wrapped up a five-city tour in Atlanta Thursday, urging the state’s Republican congressional delegation to pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill.
President Joe Biden’s $1.2 trillion infrastructure spending package is expected to include $8.9 billion for Georgia highways over five years, $1.4 billion to improve public transit, $913 million for water and sewer projects, $225 million for bridge repairs and replacements, $135 million for electric-vehicle charging stations and at least $100 million to expand the deployment of broadband.
“This is why elections matter,” U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta, Georgia’s Democratic chairman, said during a news conference in Liberty Plaza across from the state Capitol. “Real people’s lives are being made better.”
“This bill represents the largest long-term investment in our infrastructure in nearly a century without raising taxes on anybody making less than $400,000 a year,” added state Rep. Billy Mitchell, D-Stone Mountain, chairman of the Georgia House Democratic Caucus.
The U.S. Senate passed the infrastructure bill 69-30 last month, with 19 Republicans joining Democrats in support of the measure. The House of Representatives followed with a 220-212 procedural vote along party lines to move the infrastructure package forward, with a final vote expected later this month.
Williams criticized Georgia’s Republican House members for opposing the procedural motion, which also included a vote to move ahead with Biden’s much larger $3.5 trillion spending bill aimed at “human” infrastructure including child care, health care and climate change measures.
“Republicans have refused time and time again to set aside partisanship and help working families,” Williams said.
Republicans countered that the “Democrats Deliver” statewide tour ignored the state of the U.S. economy, immigration and America’s ugly exit from Afghanistan.
“Georgia Democrats (are) celebrating crushing inflation, rising crime, an out-of-control southern border and the worst foreign policy disaster in decades,” said Garrison Douglas, Georgia spokesman for the Republican National Committee. “Democrats should focus on ending the multitude of crises they’ve created.”
Besides Atlanta, the Democrats’ tour included stops in Augusta, Savannah, Macon and Columbus.