Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

H.R. 3684, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act 

On August 10, 2021, U.S. Senator Mike Crapo voted in favor of the bipartisan traditional infrastructure bill, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).  On August 11, 2021, he voted against the Democrats’ $3.5 trillion reckless tax-and-spending spree. 

A vote for the infrastructure bill stopped Democrats from using their majority in Congress to spend even more on their infrastructure package and raise Americans’ taxes. 

Had the IIJA not passed, Senate Democrats were prepared to expand the physical infrastructure spending to $2.5 trillion and add it to their $3.5 trillion misnamed ‘social infrastructure’ spending plan.  Democrats would have passed this $6 trillion total package through budget reconciliation on a party line vote. 

By supporting the much smaller hard infrastructure bill representing existing Republican priorities, Senator Crapo prevented Democrats from executing this disastrous alternative. 

If you are looking for information about my vote against the Democrats' reckless tax-and-spending spree legislation, click HERE. 

 About the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: 

  • Preserved the Filibuster--Republicans prevented the Democrats from circumventing longstanding Senate procedure intended to give minority opinions a voice in the Senate. 
  • No Biden Taxes--In the hard infrastructure bill I supported, we agreed to none of Biden’s disastrous taxes.  He will try to get them included in the $3.5 trillion social infrastructure bill, which I will continue to oppose.  
  • $1.5 Trillion Removed--Republicans successfully removed $1.5 trillion of President Biden’s planned infrastructure spending.  This is separate from the President’s Reckless $3.5 trillion spending bill, which I strongly opposed and voted against. 
  • All New Funding Offset--All new funding for infrastructure was fully offset.  The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) ruled that it was approximately $200 billion short of being fully offset.  However, the CBO budget scoring does not credit the fact that we redirected over $200 billion worth of wasteful and unspent COVID-19 funds to fully offset the new spending on hard infrastructure projects needed to keep up with Idaho’s growth. 
  • Counter-Inflationary--Investments in hard infrastructure will generate significant growth in jobs, wages and capital formation.  The U.S. will become more competitive internationally and we will grow our economy.  This is supply-side spending, which is counter-inflationary. 
  • Hard Infrastructure--Does not include a single dollar for Biden’s reckless and wasteful spending on social programs and further expansion of the federal government.  We forced the Democrats to separate real infrastructure from their partisan wish-list spending spree.  I then voted against the Democrats’ separate partisan $3.5 trillion tax-and-spending spree and will continue to fight it in the Senate.  

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act makes investments in traditional, hard infrastructure projects to help keep pace with Idaho’s rapid growth, providing resources for Idaho: 

  • Roads and highways;
  • Drinking water and wastewater infrastructure;
  • Bridge construction and maintenance;
  • Wildland firefighting;
  • Natural resources infrastructure, including fire management and reduction;
  • Airports;
  • Broadband extension; and
  • Extension of the Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program through Fiscal Year 2023.  

The Unseen: What Republicans Fought to Keep Out of the Bill: 

  • No Biden taxes. 
  • Right-to-work--There are no changes to states’ right-to-work status.  Republicans helped keep the PRO Act, which would override state right-to-work laws, out of the hard infrastructure bill. 
  • No Big Brother Data Collection--No additional funding for the IRS.  As Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Crapo fought to ensure the IRS received no new funding in the hard infrastructure bill.  The Democrats’ proposals would have pressed private-sector financial institutions into reporting deposit and withdrawal flows on customer accounts above a mere $600 value.  The Democrats have instead included it in their $3.5 trillion reckless tax-and-spending spree, which Crapo voted to remove and will continue to fight against. 

Clarifying the Mileage Tax Study: 

  • The bill does not contain new authorizations or mandates to place location tracking devices on Americans’ vehicles. 
  • I have consistently and will continue to oppose vehicle mileage taxes (VMTs). 
  • Drivers of electric vehicles do not currently pay the same gas tax the rest of us contribute to the Highway Trust Fund (HTF), which funds surface transportation projects.  Electric vehicle users must contribute to the HTF in the same way the rest of us contribute to the gas tax at the pump.  
  • Voluntary pilot programs that evaluate the potential for VMTs were already included in the last surface transportation reauthorization, the FAST Act.  Congress must evaluate all privacy-preserving options to ensure robust long-term funding for highway and transit programs.

Here are some resources for further information about Senator Crapo's views on this bipartisan investment in Idaho’s future: 

  • Radio Interview – In an interview with Neal Larson and Julie Mason at NewsTalk 107.9, Senator Crapo explained his rationale for advancing the bipartisan infrastructure bill.
  • Radio Interview – In an interview with 670 KBOI’s Nate Shelman, Senator Crapo explained why this bill is far different than Democrats’ reckless tax and spending spree.  It also answers questions about the mileage tax study.
  • Press Release– Crapo: Infrastructure Investments Help Keep Pace with Idaho’s Growth
  • The Spokesman Review – “Speaking on the Senate floor Monday, Crapo railed against the Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget resolution, calling it a “reckless tax-and-spend proposal” and drawing a clear distinction between the bill, which no Republicans are expected to support, and the bipartisan “hard infrastructure” package. 
  • Op-Ed - This op-ed by conservative columnist, Marc Thiessen, makes the clear case for why it was important to pass a bipartisan, hard infrastructure bill. In doing so, Republicans have taken away the Democrats’ argument to remove the filibuster, and have also taken away any effort to pass their $3.5 trillion wish list spending bill under the guise of “infrastructure.” 

If you are looking for information about my vote against the Democrats' reckless tax-and-spending spree legislation, click HERE.