Many applauded upon hearing President Trump address the reality that the federal government has neglected American infrastructure for far too many years. He highlights that “we’ve spent trillions and trillions of dollars overseas while our infrastructure at home has so badly crumbled.” The 2013 report card from the American Society of Civil Engineers fully supports this statement, grading American infrastructure with a D+ overall. Schools, airports, transit, dams, roads, and water systems were all graded at D. The only structures lifting the grade slightly were railroads and bridges, which received a C+.
President Trump also reminded Congress and the American people of his executive action authorizing the construction of Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines. “Thereby creating tens of thousands of jobs, and I’ve issued a new directive that new American pipelines be made with American steel.” The State Department has clarified that President Trump’s words are essentially true. 21,000 new construction jobs will result from his executive action, and the construction will last two years. In addition, another 35 permanent jobs will be filled to facilitate the pipelines’ operations. The Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, is presently devising a plan to fulfill the President’s other promise that American materials, including but not limited to steel, be used to build the pipelines.