Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding the importance of continuing to confirm President Biden’s well-qualified nominees, like Polly Trottenberg to serve as Deputy Secretary of Transportation. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:
Beyond Sen. Hirono’s legislation, the Senate is also focused this week on confirming an impressive slate of nominees to the Biden Administration.
I am especially pleased that, in a few hours, the Senate will vote to confirm Polly Trottenberg to serve as Deputy Secretary of Transportation.
This is great news for New York and great news for the country. Her credentials are beyond doubt. For the last seven years she has served as New York City’s Commissioner of Transportation, managing a transportation system that helps tens of millions of people get to and from work, connects businesses to customers, and brings to life one of America’s largest and most visited cities every single day.
Before that, Polly served in the Department of Transportation under President Obama, advising policymakers and working with stakeholders across the country on everything from high-speed rail, to roads, highways, and bridges.
And of course, her nomination is especially meaningful to me. Polly served for a nearly a decade as my legislative director and transportation advisor. She knows the needs for the country and she knows the needs of New York. And a pet project of New York—Gateway—will be well served in her capable hands. We will get this done.
Take it from me: Polly’s got smarts, she’s got savvy, she’s got moxie. And she knows how to work with people of all backgrounds to get things done for the American people.
There isn’t a moment to lose. As we work to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic and bring our economy fully back online, we must look ahead to tackle the challenges of our time.
At the top of the list is finally getting serious about addressing our nation’s crumbling infrastructure, a topic that Ms. Trottenberg is very familiar with.
And for New York, as I mentioned, that means continuing to move the ball forward on projects like Gateway—rebuilding the two rail tunnels under the Hudson—perhaps the most important transportation infrastructure priority in the entire nation and something I’ve spoken to Ms. Trottenberg and Secretary Buttigieg and President Biden about regularly.
But our infrastructure woes extend to every city and every state in the country—roads, bridges, highways, airports, public transit, housing, the electric grid are all in need of an overhaul. So too does our country need to invest in the infrastructure of the 21st Century: broadband internet access, 5G, electric vehicles. America cannot compete in this century if our infrastructure is stuck in the last century.
That’s why in addition to confirming important nominees like Ms. Trottenberg, the Senate will continue to work with the Biden Administration on a comprehensive infrastructure and jobs bill. If there is an issue that ought to unite Democrats and Republicans, it’s putting people to work to update our nation’s infrastructure.