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Biden Visits Philly, Touts Amtrak Improvements

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Vice President Joe Biden stopped off in Philadelphia today to talk about a subject dear to his heart, Amtrak.

The VP visited 30th Street Station to celebrate the launch of the new ACS-64 locomotives to the Amtrak fleet. He was accompanied by Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-Phila.) and Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx. Fattah introduced Biden as Pennsylvania’s former “third Senator” and the Vice President did little to object to the claim.

“Philly is my second home city,” the Delaware native declared. “And I married a Philly girl.”

Biden is well-known as a champion of Amtrak. As a Senator, and even now occasionally as Vice President, Biden frequently takes the trip from D.C. to Delaware by train. This tradition started as a way for the freshman Senator to be back with his two sons each night after a tragic car accident killed Biden’s first wife and daughter and injured the boys. Forty-two years later and the VP is still an avid advocate for trains.

“I’ve taken more than 8,000 round trips,” Biden said. “I’ve been able to observe the quality of the people who run this railroad. I’ve been to their weddings and funerals and I consider them real friends.”

The ACS-64 trains were commissioned by Amtrak in 2010 and built by Siemens in Sacramento, California. The new locomotives will be able to travel up to 125 mph and have a peak horsepower of 8,600. This new equipment will replace the old locomotives which Amtrak stated have been in service for between 25 and 35 years.

The Vice President touted their success as a sample of the impact the stimulus has had on the Northeast corridor and the nation at large. He asserted that even Republican congressional opponents have had to concede that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was the “best run federal government program you’ve ever seen.”

Finally, Biden tied the event backed to the core of the President’s State of the Union Address last month.

“The middle class is shrinking, income inequality has to be addressed and the only way to address it is good jobs,” the Vice President said. “Let’s seize that opportunity!”

 

February 6th, 2014 | Posted in Features, Front Page Stories, Top Stories | No Comments