President Donald Trump on Monday pledged "big" infrastructure spending, putting focus on a key campaign proposal that has taken a back seat in the first month of his administration.
Speaking to a group of governors at the White House, Trump said he will make a "big statement" about fixing roads and bridges in his Tuesday night address to a joint session of Congress. So far, the Republican-controlled Congress has not seen Trump's infrastructure spending pledge as a priority amid efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and pass tax reform.
"I'm going to have a big statement tomorrow night on infrastructure," Trump said. "We spend $6 trillion in the Middle East and we have potholes all over our highways and our roads ... so we're going to take care of that. Infrastructure — we're going to start spending on infrastructure big. Not like we have a choice. It's not like, oh gee, let's hold it off."
Trump promised to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure during his campaign, a plan that, along with hopes for tax reform and regulatory rollback, helped to boost many stocks since his election. Hopes for an infrastructure package happening soon sagged in recent weeks due to a packed legislative schedule that will also include a contentious Supreme Court justice confirmation process.
Trump did not give any more details on what specifically he could propose to Congress. It remains to be seen if Republicans can warm to an infrastructure spending proposal, though Democrats have signaled that is an issue on which they can cooperate with Trump.
Still, several infrastructure stocks spiked following Trump's statement.