Tea Party Protesters Protest Metro Service
A bit of unintentional irony arose from this weekend’s anti-government demonstrations: The protesters have complained that the government-run transportation system did too little to accommodate them. Brody Mullins:
Rep. Kevin Brady asked for an explanation of why the government-run subway system didn’t, in his view, adequately prepare for this past weekend’s rally to protest government spending and government services.
The Texas Republican on Wednesday released a letter he sent to Washington’s Metro system complaining that the taxpayer-funded subway system was unable to properly transport protesters to the rally to protest government spending and expansion. “These individuals came all the way from Southeast Texas to protest the excessive spending and growing government intrusion by the 111th Congress and the new Obama administration,” Brady wrote. “These participants, whose tax dollars were used to create and maintain this public transit system, were frustrated and disappointed that our nation’s capital did not make a great effort to simply provide a basic level of transit for them.” A spokesman for Brady says that “there weren’t enough cars and there weren’t enough trains.” Brady tweeted as much from the Saturday march. “METRO did not prepare for Tea Party March! More stories. People couldn’t get on, missed start of march. I will demand answers from Metro,” he wrote on Twitter.
Brady says in his letter to Metro that overcrowding forced an 80-year-old woman and elderly veterans in wheelchairs to pay for cabs. He concludes that it “appears that Metro added no additional capacity to its regular weekend schedule.”
But just think how much money that saved! We’ve got a deficit, dontcha know.
As a general matter — and I’m in a minority here — I find Metro service to be atrocious. Metro trains are generally cleaner than those in New York and Chicago — based on my admittedly limited experience — but they’re simply not dependable during off-peak hours.
They do a reasonably good job of providing service within DC proper during rush hour and even during the workday, but they’re just awful for providing service to the suburbs — even those suburbs with Metro stations — and during weekends and late night. (And, yes, Virginia and Maryland pay for Metro service.)
Photo by Flickr user Ivy Dawned under Creative Commons license.