The U.S. Senate yesterday defeated a bid by Sen. John McCain to stop funneling federal funds to transportation museums, highway beautification and preservation of historic bridges.

McCain claimed that money needed to repair rundown roads was being diverted to projects like squirrel sanctuaries and car museums, but Senators said his measure would block Amtrak’s use of many historic rail stations and the preservation of icons like New York’s Brooklyn Bridge and New England’s covered bridges.

McCain said recipients of money under the current program have included things as odd as a giant coffee pot. My favorite quote: “I’m a coffee drinker, and so I think a coffee pot is pretty nice,” McCain said. But he added, “The fact is we have deficient bridges. We have highways that need repairs.” Hmmm… he’s got a point there.

For the full story, read this Seattle Times story.

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