Critics blast Biden’s choice for ‘infrastructure czar’

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President Joe Biden has selected former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to become his “infrastructure czar” in charge of overseeing the massive $1.2 trillion spending measure he is set to sign into law on Monday, though it’s not a selection that is earning him plaudits.

Landrieu, a Democrat, was mayor of the Crescent City from 2010 to 2018; his sister, Mary Landrieu, served as a U.S. senator for Louisiana from 1996-2014 when she was defeated by GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy. Prior to his stint as New Orleans mayor, Mitch Landrieu served as Louisiana’s lieutenant governor.

Fox News reported that the White House chose Landrieu due to his experience leading New Orleans as well as his relationships with state and municipal leaders around the country. He will work through the National Economic Council to coordinate the infrastructure measure.

“In this role, Landrieu will oversee the most significant and comprehensive investments in American infrastructure in generations—work that independent experts verify will create millions of high-paying, union jobs while boosting our economic competitiveness in the world, strengthening our supply chains, and acting against inflation for the long term,” the White House noted in a statement.

“Appointing someone with the background and experience of having been a mayor and a state official responsible for infrastructure projects sends an important signal that the administration is focused on delivering on the promises and the opportunities that this bill presents,” said Neil Bradley, the chief policy officer at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, according to The Wall Street Journal.

But other observers aren’t so sure that Landrieu is the right choice.

For instance, Pro Publica reported earlier this month that Hurricane Ida knocked out New Orleans’ power grid, leaving some to speculate that it’s not a power company issue but more like “neglect.”

Others were more direct in their criticism of Landrieu’s stewardship of New Orleans while he was mayor, including from some who appear to be aligned with him politically.

Others recalled Biden’s own shortcomings as the ‘czar’ of the 2009 Obama-era “stimulus” spending that wound up falling far short of its lofty objectives.

Missy Halsey


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