Home / General / Will Kathy Hochul’s massive political ineptitude save congestion pricing?

Will Kathy Hochul’s massive political ineptitude save congestion pricing?

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On the merits, unless you’re on the political right or an obscenely self-interested liberal-unless-it-affects-me-personally-in-any-way suburbanite, congestion pricing is easy on the policy merits. In a vacuum, the politics are trickier — even if a majority of voters will come to appreciate the benefit, in the short term they’re more likely to focus on the tax increase, and it’s a classic case where the benefits are more diffuse than the burden.

One thing Hochul seems to have miscalculated, however, is that the politics of the congestion tax are not in a vacuum. Huge amounts of funding for the MTA — the mass transit service that the vast majority of non-rich New Yorkers use to commute and that allows New York City to be New York City — are at stake. So either the transit system will be destroyed, or there is going to have to be some other new tax, only this tax is going to be borne exclusively by New Yorkers while allowing Connecticut and New Jersey car commuters to free ride.

Claims that congestion pricing will be bad for the post-pandemic Manhattan have no answer to the obvious response that an alternative tax will be worse.

And since Hochul had no serious alternative plan she’s proposing to allow Republicans to fill in the blanks of what the tax increase will be:

Heckuva job! And since Albany so far has wisely decided not to bail her out of her abject cowardice, stupidity, and reactionary political instincts, the MTA board now has the opportunity to tell her to eat shit:

I’m less confident that they will, but they certainly should. Progressives can at least be grateful that Hochul misplaying her hand has opened up an opportunity. The legislature at least should stand up to her just like they did to her awful judicial nomination.

…Hochul: the congestion pricing plan must be killed because of the imaginary New Jersey residents who come into midtown Manhattan to go pay more for the same diner food they could get there and can’t figure out how to get to East 45 street without driving:

In addition to her frequently terrible politics Hochul is just a total dumbshit.

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