For affable LaHood, Transportation chief will be last public job

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood sees his post in the Obama administration as his last job in public office, and he likely will stay for only one term, he told the Chicago Tribune on Thursday.

LaHood spoke at the National Press Club as part of the administration's efforts to push Congress to pass President Obama's jobs bill, which failed to garner enough votes to block a filibuster earlier this week. Obama's jobs bill includes a $50 billion request for immediate infrastructure spending and $10 billion for an infrastructure bank. Neither of those ideas is likely to get very far in Congress, because Republicans are opposed to new spending in general and see the infrastructure-bank proposal as an unnecessary bureaucracy.

All this may be too much for LaHood, a moderate Republican who served in the House from 1994 until 2008. In Congress, he had a knack for running the floor smoothly and efficiently and was popular among journalists for his straight talk about House operations. As Transportation secretary, LaHood has taken the same no-nonsense approach toward an array of public-policy issues. He was hauled up before Congress in 2010 to answer questions about faulty brakes in some Toyota cars. In a gaffe, he first said that Toyota drivers shouldn't use their cars, but he backed away from those comments relatively quickly.

LaHood has also used his bully pulpit to promote safe-driving campaigns that warn drivers to avoid using smartphones to text or e-mail while on the road. That campaign has met with kudos from the industry and safety advocates alike.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download
  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.