Some advice for any Republican thinking about challenging Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro in 2026: Forget about it. Maybe think about collecting wheat pennies, or something else with a more promising future, because this is how good government works.
As reported by Lisa Rein for The Washington Post:
A section of Interstate 95 in Philadelphia that collapsed last weekend after the fiery crash of a gasoline tanker truck will reopen to traffic in the next two weeks, Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro said Saturday after joining President Biden on a helicopter tour of the vital East Coast artery.
For those who don’t live here, it’s probably impossible to explain just how significant the collapse of this particular massively traveled section of I-95 actually was to the working lives of not only Pennsylvanians, but every person or business who travels or uses the Northeast corridor on a daily basis. And the Pennsylvanians who were most affected by this—the residents of Bucks, Delaware, Montgomery, and Chester counties, not to mention the huge Democratic stronghold of Philadelphia—happen to be the same people who regularly determine the outcome of the fair commonwealth’s elections.
Think President Joe Biden didn’t see the significance of this? Oh yeah, he saw it all right.
Biden said the federal government would fully reimburse the state for the first phase of the reconstruction, then contribute 90 percent of the cost after that.
“There’s no more important project to the country right now as far as I’m concerned,” the president said, noting that the work crews are unionized. “The people of Philadelphia, I want to say that we’re with you. We’re going to stay with you” until the work has been finished.
And thanks to the infrastructure bill passed with the support of a Democratic Congress, Pennsylvanians will not have to bear the cost of an interstate highway collapse that just happened to occur in their commonwealth.
Biden also made note that Pennsylvania already has $8.9 billion from the bi-partisan infrastructure law, including $6.5 billion for transportation projects that Shapiro can use immediately for the I-95 repairs.
From Shapiro’s Twitter feed:
To fully appreciate just how significant this is, you all need to understand something: When this bridge collapse happened, the initial word was that the stretch of interstate would be out for months. Not two weeks. Months.
Yeah. That ain’t gonna happen. And the solution they arrived at is pretty damn cool, to say the least.
The rebuilding of the overpass will be expedited with the use of 2,000 tons of lightweight nuggets of recycled glass that Pennsylvania officials announced they would bring to the site in the coming days to fill in the collapsed area. The glass will be piled in the void to bring it to surface level, clearing the way for construction crews to repave the road relatively quickly.
This is just competence in action. Really memorable, visceral stuff for voters of every stripe and every political persuasion. And assuming it all works out, you can bet that Shapiro won’t let anyone forget it. Nor should he.