Some Economists Are Questioning Trump Infrastructure Plan’s Upside and “Backdoor Borrowing.” Chao Tapped to Lead USDOT.

CBS News Moneywatch reports, “Investors have cheered President-elect Donald Trump’s proposal to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure over the next 10 years. But economists are questioning the plan’s upside for the economy given its unusual and convoluted structure, which they say portends less actual infrastructure improvement and more private-sector profits.” The report adds, “Critics call it backdoor borrowing, with less accountability than direct government spending, and they say the plan will result in emphasizing projects with private sector profit potential and fewer badly needed maintenance projects and improvements in underserved areas.”

The New York Times describes Elaine Chao, the Trump nominee for USDOT secretary as “a woman and an immigrant, a fixture of the Republican establishment for two decades. She is a savvy and professional practitioner of the capital’s inside game.” The Times adds that she is “likely to be one of the more essential players” in the new administration given the president-elect’s anticipated infrastructure renewal program.