DOT: Onion spoof was 'half-right'

DOT: Onion spoof was 'half-right'
© The Onion

The Department of Transportation is using a satirical report by The Onion website to boost its case for an increase in federal transportation funding. 

The Onion mocked Transportation Secretary Anthony FoxxAnthony Renard FoxxBig Dem names show little interest in Senate Lyft sues New York over new driver minimum pay law Lyft confidentially files for IPO MORE appeals to Congress for a boost in transportation funding last week in article that said he wondered what would happened if U.S. residents stopped traveling altogether. 

It quoted Foxx as saying, “What if everyone stops commuting to work or booking vacations and just stays put for good?” during a fictitious Cabinet meeting. 

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“What if everyone collectively decides they don’t like taking trips anymore,” the fake Transportation chief continued. “What if people never leave the same spot? Oh, God, what would I do then?”

Transportation Department officials said in a blog post on Tuesday that The Onion was only partially right about Foxx’s concerns about the future of the nation’s infrastructure. 

“We at USDOT can reassure you that ‘America's finest news source,’ as The Onion bills itself, was only half-right,” the agency wrote. 

“While it's true that Secretary Foxx is concerned about the American people traveling in the future, none of us at USDOT are worried they might decide not to travel,” the blog post continued. “Instead, we are worried about how Americans are going to get where they need to go when we do travel. That's why we launched our study, ‘Beyond Traffic: Trends and Choices,’ which examines the challenges we'll face in the next 30 years.” 

The Transportation Department said the Onion report called attention to a serious problem that is facing the nation when it comes to infrastructure funding. 

“One of the trends we noted in ‘Beyond Traffic’  is population growth: America is expected to grow by 70 million people over the next three decades,” the agency wrote. “So, yes, a transportation system that struggles to move people safely and without bottlenecks in 2015 is going to struggle even more to move our population in 2045. ... This should be a concern for all of us.”