President Bush is threatening to veto an Amtrak funding bill because it doesn’t provide accountability. That’s a little ironic, coming from him, but we already know Bush is completely and unalterably opposed to rail transit as a viable mode of travel in the United States. Sadly, so is John McCain.

BeyondDC has a summary of the bill, which not only funds Amtrak but would take steps (mostly baby steps) toward improving speeds between New York and Washington, creating high-speed rail to Charlotte, building a new rail tunnel under Baltimore (perhaps the one from Camden Yards here?), and adding a third track to Richmond which would relieve key capacity bottlenecks.

Eleanor Holmes Norton and Elijah Cummings are cosposors of the bill. BeyondDC further reports that House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer “says passage of the bill before the August recess will be a priority.” If Congress can avoid a Senate filibuster, pass the bill, draw a veto, and schedule an override vote, it’d be a good opportunity to force anti-transit Congresspeople to defend their opposition to something that would relieve the problems of high gas prices just as we near the election.

David Alpert is Founder and President of Greater Greater Washington and Executive Director of DC Sustainable Transportation (DCST). He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He lives with his wife and two children in Dupont Circle. Unless otherwise noted, opinions in his GGWash posts are his and not the official views of GGWash or DCST.