Lawmakers continue to double down on stupid

June 10, 2021

Jami Jones

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Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont and Rep. Hank Johnson from Georgia are on a long list of usual suspects who don’t even attempt to understand truckers or trucking. In fact, they go so far as to vilify truckers quite frequently.

In the ever-competitive game of who can take the limbo bar of stupid to new lows, these two moved the bar dang near to rock bottom on June 9 when they shot their mouths off once again.

First, let’s talk about Gov. Ned Lamont.

When talking to the media about the passage of a highway use tax that unfairly targets truckers, he leaned all in with his disdain for the trucking industry.

“I was struck by a comment by the truckers’ lobbyist. They said, ‘Watch out. A lot of the big tractor-trailer trucks may avoid your highway user fee and end run Connecticut,” he said to reporters. “Well that’s not so bad either. We’ll have a little less traffic on the road, a little less asthma for the people who live along the road, and we’ll still have the resources we need to make the investments we’ve got to.”

 

You almost have to let that one marinate for a minute to appreciate just how many 53-foot trailers it would take to carry all of that stupid.

All I know to say at this point is, “Be careful what you wish for, big boy.” Connecticut residents are going to be longing for the days of the Great Toilet Paper Shortage of 2020 and the early post-pandemic high prices, and then they will blame you, Gov. Lamont, when trucks stop delivering in your state.

One could only guess that a staffer tipped off Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., to Lamont’s throwing down the stupid gauntlet.

I can see Johnson saying, “Here hold my beer, I gotta testify in this hearing and show ol’ Neddy how it’s done.”

The markup hearing on the INVEST in America Act, better known in our trucking circle as the highway bill, was also held June 9.

Rep. Mike Bost, R-Ill., introduced an amendment that would strip language from the bill seeking to increase the minimum required insurance on trucks from $750,000 to $2 million. Many Republican lawmakers on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee spoke in favor of the amendment and in support of truck drivers.

Not Hank Johnson. Nope. One-upping Ned Lamont’s stupid comments, here are a few Johnson said in opposition to the Bost amendment.

“Ever so often, and ever more frequently these days, there are collisions involving tractor-trailers and other trucks and, most importantly, private cars,” he said.

 

Most importantly? Most importantly? It’s pretty obvious who he does and does not think is important. And as if there is any doubt, read on.

“Let’s protect people who are in their automobiles riding down the street when they get injured, they need to have coverage from these truckers.”

 

Key in on the word “people” and read that quote again.

“We owe it to the people we represent. I mean we have truckers out there, and they perform a service, but we represent people, and these people get injured from time to time by these truckers, and they deserve to have a level of insurance coverage that will protect them,” he said.

 

So, we have two species? People and truckers? Last we checked, Hank, truckers are people.

Let’s hope that ol’ Neddy doesn’t decide to one-up Hank. I honestly hate to guess what crazy train they’ll jump on next. LL

Jami Jones has been in journalism since 1991 – focused on the trucking industry since 2000. Whether judging Shell SuperRigs or writing hard-hitting analyses, she covers trucking from lug nuts to legislation – always with the trucker in mind.