Gov. Steve Beshear talks bridges and EPA with President Obama

09/22/2011 04:47 PM

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear told Pure Politics he planned to lobby President Barack Obama for as much federal help as possible for fixing the closed Sherman Minton Bridge to Louisville and building a new Brent Spence Bridge in Northern Kentucky.

Beshear and Obama met at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport on Thursday afternoon before the president spoke in front of the Brent Spence Bridge.

Obama used the bridge as a backdrop to make a pitch for his $450 billion proposal aimed at creating jobs through a mix of tax breaks and infrastructure spending.

Beshear listed Kentucky’s infrastructure priorities that he would be discussing with the president:

That wasn’t the only topic Beshear had planned to bring up.

He said he also would explain to the president why he opposed water quality guidelines by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Beshear joined a lawsuit with the Kentucky Coal Association to challenge those guidelines because they claim the rules unfairly thwart coal mine permitting.

The last time the president came this close to Kentucky was in May when Obama visited Fort Campbell in Christian County to meet with military personnel involved in the operation to kill Osama bin Laden. But Beshear didn’t attend that event. Beshear’s staff said he wasn’t invited, and instead attended the Kentucky Oaks race in Louisville that day.

- Reporting and video by Kenny Colston


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