Earlier this week, President Trump cut California’s federal grant for the high speed rail, after Gov Gavin Newsom cancelled the project. It’s simply a matter of default. The federal government awarded the money to California for the high speed rail from LA to San Francisco.
But California defaulted and therefore, the money needs to be paid back. Newsom claims the money belongs to California even though they defaulted. It’s like going to a restaurant. You place your order but they decide to close the kitchen but expect you to pay for the meal anyway. This is a common procedure in the private sector.
The Trump administration announced this week that it was canceling nearly $1 billion in grant money for California’s now-defunct high-speed rail project — and President Donald Trump is coming for the other $2.5 billion.
The $2.5 billion has already been spent — but California has failed to deliver the high-speed rail (on time, or at all) as promised.
Therefore, the Trump administration argues, the state has to repay federal taxpayers.
Newsom said the state would still build a portion of the high-speed rail project in the Central Valley in an effort to hold onto the federal funds that President Barack Obama’s administration had allocated to the project: “I am not interested in sending $3.5 billion in federal funding that was allocated to this project back to Donald Trump, Newsom told legislators in the State Capitol in Sacramento.
But President Trump objected, demanding on Twitter: “California has been forced to cancel the massive bullet train project after having spent and wasted many billions of dollars. They owe the Federal Government three and a half billion dollars. We want that money back now. Whole project is a “green” disaster!” Newsom responded: “This is CA’s money, allocated by Congress for this project. We’re not giving it back.” He also taunted the president, accusing him of “desperately searching for some wall $$,” referring to Trump’s barrier on the U.S.-Mexico border.