Senator Boxer Evades Question on Funding Source for Multi-Billion Dollar Stimulus Bill

By Nicholas Ballasy | December 9, 2008 | 7:11 PM EST

( - Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer (Calif.), chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, wrote a letter to President-elect Obama Monday outlining America’s transportation and infrastructure needs. During a Capitol Hill press conference, Boxer said an economic stimulus package to address these needs could cost anywhere between $500 billion and $1 trillion.
But Boxer evaded’s question about whether the funding for the multi-billion dollar bill would come from the Treasury or from borrowing.
“Well, I think you could ask the same question as to where George Bush got his $700 billion,” she said. “This emergency funding.”

Phone calls made to Boxer’s Capitol Hill office to get a complete answer to the question were not returned prior to the filing of this story.

Boxer’s letter to Obama says “the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue study commission found between $241 and $286 billion” in need for “all transportation infrastructure each year through 2020.” In the letter, Boxer calls on President-elect Obama to “mobilize our great nation” during the current recession.

“America pulled itself out of the Great Depression by mobilizing to fight World War II,” says Boxer in the letter. “Now, in order to break out of this deep recession, we must also mobilize our great nation by rebuilding our infrastructure and by combating global warming.”

During the press conference, Boxer said she has heard that an economic stimulus bill addressing transportation, infrastructure, and global warming issues may cost as much as $1 trillion.

“I’ve heard that the entire bill would be somewhere in the neighborhood of between $500 billion and $1 trillion over two years,” she said.