Tags: Amtrak Derailment | Scott Perry | amtrak | democrats | gain | political

Rep. Scott Perry: Dems Wrong to Use Amtrak Wreck for Gain

By    |   Thursday, 14 May 2015 06:48 PM

Democrats were wrong to use Tuesday night's Amtrak derailment to attack Republicans over infrastructure funding especially since their arguments aren't true, Rep. Scott Perry told Newsmax TV's "Hard Line" on Thursday.

"It's reprehensible," the Pennsylvania Republican told host Ed Berliner. Democrats should not be spending political capital while families of the eight dead are still freshly grieving and the wounded are still recovering, he added.

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Money has actually been allocated to the Northeast Corridor, where Amtrak is making money, Perry said, and a system to automatically slow down trains already exists and is to be improved by year's end.

"To use this argument that Republicans haven't supported infrastructure, quite honestly, it's incredibly poor taste and insulting not only to members of Congress, but certainly to the families and the victims of the accident," he said.

Perry, a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said the problem lies with taking the $500 million in profit from the Northeast Corridor and spending it in other parts of the country where Amtrak isn't seeing passengers.

"It seems to me a place that gets 2,000 trains daily, you should put the money and the safety implementation where the train is being used, and that's what didn't happen," he said.

Democrats aren't really interested in solving the problem, but just want to throw more money around, he said. "I imagine if we would've given the engineer $100 million, he wouldn't be working for Amtrak and this wouldn't be happening, but that's not the answer," he added.

Perry also is a member of the Homeland Security Committee, and talked about the bulk collection of Americans' phone data as part of the Patriot Act, which expires in its current form on June 1.

The program "actually did go overboard," according the a recent ruling by Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Perry said, noting that the court determined the program "is everything but unconstitutional, unlawful search and seizure under the Fourth Amendment."

He said he isn't any happier with a House bill to turn over the data collection to private phone companies.

"It's just that the government's not doing it and now they have Verizon doing it or Google doing it," Perry said. "Does that make you feel any more comfortable as an American?"

Senate Republicans should take another look at the program and preserve the privacy protections in the Constitution, he said.

"This is not a banana republic Third World country where the dictator gets to determine where you are, what you're doing, what you're saying and who you're meeting with," he said.

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Democrats were wrong to use Tuesday night's Amtrak derailment to attack Republicans over infrastructure funding - especially since their arguments aren't true, Rep. Scott Perry told Newsmax TV's "Hard Line" on Thursday.
Scott Perry, amtrak, democrats, gain, political
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2015-48-14
Thursday, 14 May 2015 06:48 PM
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