The Latest: Schumer fires back at Trump on traffic project

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on a dispute over a New York railway tunnel project (all times local):

4:45 p.m.

Top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer is firing back at President Trump’s effort to block funding for a new Hudson River rail tunnel.

Schumer tells The Associated Press that “I don’t think anyone should play politics with a project like this, plain and simple.”

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao acknowledged to a House panel on Tuesday that Trump wants to kill the multi-billion dollar Gateway Project. She said New York and New Jersey “need to step up” and shoulder more of the project’s cost.

But Schumer says “the states have really stepped up to the plate. It’s the feds who haven’t.” He helped broker an agreement under which the neighboring states would offset half of the project’s cost.”

The administration says there is no such agreement and that no application has been filed with the Department of Transportation.


2:45 p.m.

Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao says President Donald Trump asked Speaker Paul Ryan to block funding for a multi-billion dollar railway tunnel project. The project is a top priority of the Senate’s top Democrat and chief Trump antagonist, Chuck Schumer.

In contentious exchanges with several lawmakers, Chao told a House committee Tuesday that Trump indeed is intervening to try to kill the project. She said that New York and New Jersey “have no skin in the game” and need to pony up more money to help pay for the Gateway Project, which would build a new tunnel under the Hudson River and make other critically sought improvements.

The House has approved $900 million for the project.

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