President Obama addressed a group of digital journalists at the White House Wednesday stating that the construction industry and state and local governments are weighing down the U.S. economy. If those two sectors were recovering as they have in previous recessions, the unemployment rate would be in the 6% range, said the president.
This isn’t the first time Obama has talked about the correlation between an improved infrastructure and a stronger economy. The president has long fought to send more aid to state and local governments, as well as boosting infrastructure spending.
These two areas received billions of dollars from his 2009 stimulus act, which he hoped would reverse the nation’s economic drop. However, Congress has resisted funneling more money to assist these sectors.
“This country could greatly benefit from a major rebuilding — roads, bridges, ports, high-speed internet, high-speed rail,” Obama said.