Senate Democrats Get Talks Over Highway Bill on the Road Again

Leaders from both parties ramped up negotiations on Tuesday over renewing transportation legislation, leading to a new offer from Senate democrats.

On Tuesday Senate democrats offered a “new deal” for renewing federal highway programs after House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) spoke with their lead negotiators in an effort to break the stalemate this issue has caused both parties. As of late, the issue has been dormant but with the deadline for renewal quickly approaching something had to be done.

John Mica, Chairman, house transportation and infrastructure committee, was the lead negotiator for the GOP. Mica expressed that his Democratic counterpart, Sen. Barbara Boxer (Calif.), had presented new Senate proposals but that he had yet to fully review them and could not say whether they represented concessions on the key sticking points. Mica had planned to brief Republican members of the 47-member House-Senate conference committee later Tuesday. Before the leadership meeting, Mica also said he needed to see “a lot of concessions on some of the major issues” from Democrats. As no agreement has been reached yet Mica believes there is more work to be done in the coming days, “We’re going to talk hour by hour and see if we can get this done,” Rep. John Mica (Fla.), speaking to reporters after the pep talk given by Speaker John Boehner.