Eric Cantor's Thoughts While Biking

House Majority Eric Cantor (R-VA), has been a leading opponent of funding for cycling programs in the Federal Transportation Bill.

Of more than $50 billion that US Congress will authorize for transportation (maybe someday), Cantor would prefer to see it all go to real transportation projects — interstate highways, roads, bridges, etc. for motorized vehicles. Not a single Federal penny for supporting bike commuting, storage facilities, bike lanes, or bike sharing.

Was Eric Cantor Forced to Ride This Bike? | Streetsblog Capitol Hill
Screen Shot: Streetsblog Capitol Hill

The new Transportation Bill has been in limbo over mostly Republican objections to bike and pedestrian projects like this.

So it was notable when Cantor was seen in a staged bike ride on 60 Minutes.

Streetsblog Capitol Hill noticed, and responded with this editorial, suggesting that Cantor was “forced” to ride a bike.

Eric Cantor, I am willing to give you the benefit of the doubt and believe that 60 Minutes forced you to pose for this shot.

Because, Mr. Majority Leader, it seems a little hypocritical that a person who has worked so hard to keep others from biking would enjoy it himself.

I could have posted this here right away, but I needed time to make a silly video presenting Cantor’s thoughts as he cycled for the cameras.

Sorry I can’t do a better Cantor impersonation.

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17 thoughts on “Eric Cantor's Thoughts While Biking”

  1. Tom Bowden says:

    That was you? I thought it really was Eric Cantor!

  2. Josh King says:

    I think Cantor is a lot whinier in real life.

  3. Island Dave says:

    I’ve been a member of the local Joint Transportation Committee for 20 years. the JTC is made up of representatives of the 6 local town municipalities, the airport, local bus transportation, the ferry service to the Island and then myself, representing the interests of cyclists and pedestrians. 20 years ago they were required to have someone representing the interests of cyclists and pedestrians. I was the token cyclists who turned into PITA. Things are slowly changing for the better nation wide despite this idiot Cantor. I’ve received a daily news letter from AASHTO (American Association of Traffic and Highway Officials) and it has only been in the last year or so do you see any notice of bicycle facilities and they are growing rapidly.

    Great video. I’ve posted it on Face Book.
    Cantor is up for reelection this year. One can only hope that he gets the tossed.

  4. Mark says:

    Although I am no fan of Eric Cantor, I would have to agree that bicycle infrastructure is not an appropriate thing to be spending FEDERAL transportation $ on. I believe that bicycle infrastructure is and should be a local issue, which should be funded locally. I also believe that we should not be subsidizing the highway system either, and I think that if federal subsidies for highways were to go away, we would find that alternatives such as cycling and public transit would become much more popular.

  5. BluesCat says:

    Mark – Local and state governments have proven, time and again, that if you do not compel them to cooperate with building things like the Interstate Highway System — via matching funds from the Feds — they simply will not do it.

    And without the Interstate system, which makes it MUCH more economical to get products around this country, the cost of virtually everything would be so high that the economy would be in the pits worse than it was in the Great Recession.

    Same thing with bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure. Without the Feds sweetening the pot, local government tax revenues would not, COULD not, be stretched to accommodate the building of bike paths and open access to the roadways.

  6. Max Power says:

    Members of environmental groups campaigned against widening of the Parkway and Turnpike (the only major north-south routes) here in the Garden State.
    Are those of us who opposed those projects also hypocrites if we use those roads now that they’ve been expanded?

  7. Max Power says:

    Also, what happened to reaching out to conservatives?
    When talking to my conservative Congressman during the summit, I’ll be giving him a list of sites that show practical everyday cycling to explain that no one is asking for subsidies for “Lance Armstrong wannabes.” I don’t think it’s a good idea to include CbB anymore, since he or his staff may play this childish personal insult at one of his peers.

  8. Joel says:

    Regardless of political affiliation, using a bicycle is truly in the American Spirit.

    “Amber waves of grain…”, I ride to my bus on a bike and it cost me about 400 calories. I enjoy the product of America, wheat, in my bagel that propels me to work everyday. No foreign oil, just American made fuel. Made in America instead of being imported from another country.

    “Self determined…”, I do not expect anyone to give me something for nothing, I am willing to work and sweat for what I want. I want a better standard of living and riding a bicycle helps me to save money. I work hard riding my bicycle as much as I can to save (and per Benjamin Franklin, “A penny saved is a penny earned…”) money and keep it here in America.

    Exercising regularly has been identified by every medical expert in our nation as a means to reduce weight, extend life, increase the quality of life, and fulfill the Constitution. I am “…pursuing happiness…” while saving the American taxpayers healthcare dollars by avoiding the complications of high blood pressure and obesity.

    As the cost of a gallon of gasoline skyrockets in the coming year, those who question my sanity now will ask me for pointers as I try and set an example into the uncharted territories like Williams and Clark. They did not use gasoline outboard motors on their trip. I have gone back to the future and I am using an organic fuel generator cell to power my commute: my buttocks of steel are using their mitochondria to convert the “…amber waves or grain…” into one of the most efficient methods of transportation known to man.

    Did I tell you that I just enjoy biking?

  9. Tom Bowden says:

    Max – I wouldn’t worry too much. This is pretty gentle stuff when you compare it to the daily dose Cantor gets from other sources. Josh and Island Dave – you are of course entitled to your opinions, and I am no fan of Mr. Cantor’s position on cycling and infrastructure, but let me ask you – when was the last time you saw Nancy Pelosi on a bicycle?

  10. James McClellan says:

    I think what you NEED to ask is “Why is Cantor against Cycling and Pelosi for cycling? It doesn’t matter whether she’s never rode a bike in her life, as long as she’s not opposed to riding my bike on public roads. As long as she isn’t opposed to cycling infrastructure. As long as she isn’t opposed to protecting cyclists and enforces those laws that protect, making sure the punishment is suitably severe.

    But hey!… its the Republican way to say NO to anything nowadays, whether its good for the country, your state, your city, town and even simply your abode or if its not. They just want the black guy (I could have said what they really call him but…) to stop telling them what to do.

  11. BluesCat says:

    James McClellan, you’ve hit the nail on the head. It doesn’t matter WHAT language you’re using, or HOW much sense your argument makes, if your side of the issue doesn’t tow the accepted Red State Righty line, they’re going to be tossing all kinds of GOPy caltrops in the road.

    Bicycles as a SERIOUS form of transportation for Americans? You gotta be KIDDING!

  12. Tom Bowden says:

    James and BluesCat – there have been too many comments by bona fide pro-bike republicans and conservatives on this page and many others for your “All republicans hate cyclists, bicycles and babies” comments to hold any water. Don’t let yourselves be sucked into the “holier than thou” liberal/democrat line without thinking it through. It just does not advance our common cause of promoting cycling as a mainstream transportation mode. It might make you fell good to make these statements and have someone confirm them for you – therefore making you feel like you must be right, but after the endorphins of self righteousness wear off, you’re still sitting in the same place, fighting for your lane on the road in the real world.

  13. BluesCat says:

    Hey, Tom, now YOU know that I absolutely salute you, and embrace you, as a fellow cyclist. (As a matter of fact, you righteously SHAME me as a bike commuter when the weather we each face is taken into consideration as an obstacle to riding.)

    However, we must also face the fact that each of us is painted — rightly or wrongly, fairly or unfairly — by the broad brush of the color of the majority of our political views. People who discover that I am of a more liberal bent will naturally assume I am in favor of stricter gun controls; I am NOT. People who know YOUR more conservative leanings are often flabbergasted when they discover you ride a BICYCLE TO WORK. I find it refreshing, almost wondrous, that someone who must up-dress so much more than me actually tackles that and makes it look easy.

    As impressed as I am, I am also NO dummy. YOU, and the noble conservatives like you who support bicycling as a viable, important transportation alternative are in the Red Group Miniscule Minority. Please do not ask me to accept your sterling example as the “norm” for the Republican view of bicycles as I take to task the power-brokers of the Right: Cantor, John McCain, Tom Coburn, etc.

    I’ll make a deal with you, Tom, I’ll vote a straight Republican ticket on the very next Election Day that I have heard MORE THAN HALF of Republican candidates use a particular set of adjectives correctly:
    The adjective “democratic” (not capitalized) means “of, relating to, or favoring democracy.”
    The adjective “Democratic” (capitalized) means “of or relating to one of the two major political parties in the United States.”
    The word “democrat,” capitalized or not, is a NOUN.

    When I hear that, I’ll believe they’re more interested in America and Americans than they are at getting in verbal jabs at their opponents.

  14. RA Clark says:

    This article needs one thing: a link to Eric Cantor’s opponent in 2012, Wayne Powell. Anyone else is off to donate to Cantor’s challenger?

  15. Tom Bowden says:

    BluesCat and James McLellan – have you ever considered what an incredibly powerful ALLY Cantor could be if you could get him on your side? Or would that take all the fun out of it for you?

  16. BluesCat says:

    Tom – I agree, he would. And no matter WHAT tactic I take, since believing the bicycle is a valid transportation alternative seems to be an almost entirely Democratic cause, I consider the likelihood of THAT happening to be about as remote as better than fifty percent of Republicans using the adjective “Democratic” correctly.

    The Ol’ Liberal Cat would be ENORMOUSLY DELIGHTED if Cantor came out, vocally, in favor of including funding for bicycle infrastructure in the transportation bill. What FUN it would be to write letters to Senators McCain and Coburn saying “Hey, ‘Out of Gas’ manifesto authors, Senator Cantor thinks this is a good idea, WHATSAMATTA with YOU??”

  17. BluesCat says:

    Excuse me: should be “Representative Cantor,” not “Senator.” I was giggling so hard at the prospect I misspoke (or is that “mistyped”?).

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