Washington’s War on Cars and the Suburbs

Abstract: Many of the claims and assertions that U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood makes on behalf of the transit industry are inconsistent with the data and studies produced by many agencies of the federal gov ernment, including his own Department of Transportation. Secretary LaHood has based his policy largely on the work of lobbyists, rather than on the work of analysts and statisticians who work in the DOT, and has largely ignored the extensive work by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, Congressional Research Service, Congressional Budget Office, United States Bureau of the Census, and U.S.-based aca demics and independent research organizations. Virtually none of Secretary LaHood’s claims can withstand scrutiny. Unless realistic expectations based on objective and reliable information replace the ideological and undeliverable goal of trying to divert travel away from cars to transit, the nation could find itself spending hundreds of billions more dollars without accomplishing anything but further congesting its urban areas, increasing unemployment, and retarding productivity.

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