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Newt Gingrich

Former House Speaker; Chairman of Gingrich 360

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Americans should not have to pay to rebuild Key Bridge

Apr 3

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The collapse of the Key Bridge in Baltimore represents a major setback for the Port of Baltimore and the entire East Coast highway network. Although the debris removal may be completed within a few weeks, the reconstruction process will be both time-consuming and expensive. Some estimates suggest the cost could exceed $1 billion. So who will pay the bill?

Straight Arrow News contributor Newt Gingrich contends that there is a fundamental issue with how President Biden and fellow Democrats perceive the role of government. Gingrich argues that in the case of rebuilding the bridge, American taxpayers should not be solely responsible, especially when insurance companies are liable to cover such damages.

President Joe Biden’s announcement that the U.S. taxpayers were going to put up a billion dollars to rebuild the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore is about as dumb as anything this administration has done. And boy, that’s saying a lot.

Why would I say it’s dumb? Pretty straightforward. The ship that hit the bridge is insured, the insurance company has an obligation to pay for the damages.

Now, Biden, who is a left-wing Democrat, of course, is against big corporations and against the rich. Why would he step in and protect the insurance company from having to meet its obligation? After all, the reason you buy insurance is in case you need it. And presumably, the insurance syndicate that was put together to cover this ship is fully prepared to pay in this kind of circumstance. That’s why they have insurance premiums. Oh, that’s not good enough for Joe Biden. He has this nutty idea that if the federal government steps in, then he will be a hero.

President Joe Biden’s announcement that the US taxpayers, were going to put up a billion dollars to rebuild the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, is about as dumb as anything this administration has done. And boy, that’s saying a lot. Why would I say it’s dumb, pretty straightforward. The ship that hit the bridge is insured, the insurance company has an obligation to pay for the damages. Now, Biden, who is a left wing Democrat, of course, is against big corporations and against the rich. Why would he step in and protect the insurance company from having to meet its obligation after all, the reason you buy insurance is in case you need it. And presumably, the insurance syndicate that was put together to cover this ships is fully prepared to pay in this kind of circumstance. That’s why they have insurance premiums. Oh, that’s not good enough for Joe Biden. He has this nutty idea that if the federal government steps in, then he will be a hero, the bridge is very important, and affects shipping across the whole Middle Atlantic area. There’s no doubt that has to be fixed. There’s also no doubt that there are things you could do that are practical things that, for example, Governor DeSantis did in Florida, when the hurricane hit things that Governor Wilson did in California, when they had the Northridge earthquake, things that Governor Schwarzenegger did in California, when they had the Oakland bridge crisis, and things that were done in Utah, when they had to get the Winter Olympics fixed. We have clear examples around the country, how you can move very fast, and how you can get things fixed very rapidly. In fact, I would say one of the great examples of Governor DeSantis his leadership was how rapidly they rebuilt the bridge to Sanibel Island, which people thought would take months and months. And I think they had the first bridge temporary bridge up within like two weeks. So we know it can be done. I’m all for things the federal government can do waive the Environmental Studies away the other kinds of requirements, make it possible to move in there and get the job done. All those things are important, and they can be done. But I don’t see any reason why you and I should have to pay to rebuild a bridge when there are insurance companies fully prepared to pay for it. Furthermore, I think there’s a profound problem here, just with the way Biden and the Democrats look at government and look at the need to step in. What’s another billion dollars among friends? Well, $2 billion is a lot of money. A billion dollars in education, a billion dollars and fixing our national parks, a billion dollars in health care, a lot of good things you could do with a billion dollars. Why would you allow the rich insurance companies to many of whom are by the way overseas? London is the center of global maritime insurance. Why would you allow them to get off the hook while they put the hook on you and me? Congress should pass a bill that says no, to Joe Biden’s desire to throw away our money.

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