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Trump And Democrats Begin Infrastructure Talks

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Believe it or not, a bipartisan deal may be in the works in Washington, and it's on infrastructure.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

NANCY PELOSI: We just had a very productive meeting with the president of the United States.

CORNISH: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer made the announcement earlier today.

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CHUCK SCHUMER: We agreed on a number, which was very, very good - $2 trillion for infrastructure.

CORNISH: We'll have details on that meeting from our correspondents in a moment.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

First - a reminder that infrastructure is a favorite talking point for the president.

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PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Infrastructure - we're going to start spending on infrastructure big.

Introduces a $1 trillion investment in infrastructure.

The easiest thing is infrastructure. They want it. I want it.

CHANG: Today's meeting was the first on the topic since Democrats took control of the House in January. Both parties have talked a lot about infrastructure as a theoretical point of compromise, but there hasn't been a lot of action.

CORNISH: Trump released an infrastructure plan early last year, but it's gone nowhere in Congress. And that's meant no movement on bridges and roads across the country that are in desperate need of repair.

CHANG: One of them is the Brent Spence Bridge in Cincinnati. President Trump promised to replace it during the campaign.

On this program in 2017, we heard from Joe Dryer who had a flooring business and said he crossed the bridge two or three times a day.

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JOE DRYER: Cars will be broke down, and we'll be on it for a half hour to an hour at a time. And the whole bridge just shakes.

CHANG: Two years later, the bridge remains as rusted and traffic-jammed as ever. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.