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house Bill H.R. 45

Should I-57 in Illinois be Renamed the 'Barack Obama Highway'?

Argument in favor

Former president Barack Obama began his political career in Chicago’s South Side. Renaming the portion of I-57 that goes through Illinois after him is a fitting way to recognize his connection to the state.

jimK's Opinion
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08/04/2019
I have seen many sections of interstate highways with commemorative names for people who I have never heard of, I’m ashamed to admit. I think that the significance of Obama’s election and what he stood for are certainly worthy of at least re-naming a stretch of highway. I had always thought this was something that States did, not the Federal government. I guess that was wrong. I do not see that re-naming a section of highway is worth a lot of debate or contentiousness but if this is the way it Is done, go ahead and do it. I’m all for it. Besides it would be a lot of fun to see if trump would try to veto it!
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Mark's Opinion
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08/04/2019
Sure but don’t worry trump supporters , I’m sure we can find a rat infested alley somewhere that we can name after trump!
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08/04/2019
Yes. Honoring President Obama is an appropriate thing to do. Pass this bill.
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Argument opposed

This is a frivolous bill that doesn’t serve any specific purpose. Renaming only part of I-57 may also make it confusing to navigate if the name changes mid-highway.

Justindoyle's Opinion
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08/04/2019
I just don’t think that we should be spending political time on something like this, regardless of who it would be named after.
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Bryan's Opinion
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08/04/2019
This should be a State issue. Let Illinois decide since it falls within state boundaries.
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RAN's Opinion
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08/04/2019
Oh hell no, but the idiots in Illinois will, because they suck. Name an interstate after the worst president in history, good idea Illinois.🙄🙄
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
      Highways and Transit
    IntroducedJanuary 3rd, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 45?

This bill — the Barack Obama Highway Act — would rename the portion of Interstate Highway 57 (I-57) in Illinois as “Barack Obama Highway” in honor of the 44th president, who began his political career in Chicago.

Impact

Illinois; I-57; and Barack Obama.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 45

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthRep. Bobby Rush (D-IL) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to designate the portion of Interstate Route 57 (I-57) located in Illinois as “Barack Obama Highway.”  When he introduced this bill in the 115th Congress, Rep. Rush said:

“Renaming a portion of I-57 will be a constant reminder of the legacy of President Barack Obama who started his historic political career in Illinois and was elected to the highest office in the land from our great state. This major interstate artery, which connects commuters, students, and tourists will serve as a powerful symbol of the connection President Obama not only had with the country but with the state he adopted as his own.”

In 2018, Rep. Rush acknowledged that this bill is in part a response to President Trump:

“I am convinced that given the current administration, and when you compare the current administration to the Obama administration … Americans, many of them in this nation, have an allegiance to Obama… He has risen to prominence.”

This bill has four Democratic cosponsors in the 116th Congress. Last Congress, Rep. Rush introduced this bill without any cosponsors and it didn’t see committee action.


Of NoteRep. Rush’s office notes that I-57 is currently the second-longest two-digit Interstate Highway without an auxiliary route, and the only expressway crossing the Chicagoland area without a commonly-used name.

Former president Obama was elected to the Senate from Illinois in 2004, and was elected the 44th president four years later. Rep. Rush says that Obama’s successful political career “all started in the South Side of Chicago.” Writing in the Rockford Register Star, Chris Kaergard adds that Obama’s “time in Chicago and its politics helped clarify his presidential character to the world, and prepare him for the task.”


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: Marc Nozell via Flickr / Creative Commons)

AKA

Barack Obama Highway Act

Official Title

To designate the portion of Interstate Route 57 that is located in Illinois as the "Barack Obama Highway", and for other purposes.

    I have seen many sections of interstate highways with commemorative names for people who I have never heard of, I’m ashamed to admit. I think that the significance of Obama’s election and what he stood for are certainly worthy of at least re-naming a stretch of highway. I had always thought this was something that States did, not the Federal government. I guess that was wrong. I do not see that re-naming a section of highway is worth a lot of debate or contentiousness but if this is the way it Is done, go ahead and do it. I’m all for it. Besides it would be a lot of fun to see if trump would try to veto it!
    Like (138)
    Follow
    Share
    I just don’t think that we should be spending political time on something like this, regardless of who it would be named after.
    Like (71)
    Follow
    Share
    Sure but don’t worry trump supporters , I’m sure we can find a rat infested alley somewhere that we can name after trump!
    Like (104)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. Honoring President Obama is an appropriate thing to do. Pass this bill.
    Like (68)
    Follow
    Share
    This should be a State issue. Let Illinois decide since it falls within state boundaries.
    Like (55)
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    I’m all for any kind of commemoration to President Obama. He was such a good man with a kind heart. Although the president should be mostly above reproach, Obama was better than most. Oh - for those days!!!
    Like (47)
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    Yes. Put his name on as many things as you possibly can. This will make tRump angry and he will throw a temper tantrum like the BABY HE IS. tRump will NEVER be the MAN the Obama was or is.
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    President Obama stood for the values we as Americans did not so long ago. He may not have made all the people happy, but made the majority so. He was truly a Good Man. I will definitely agree with naming the highway after him.
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    Yes to Barack Obama Highway.
    Like (31)
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    Why not? FYII: Interstate means “between states” as in crossing state lines. “Interstate” as in “interstate commerce” is regulated by Congress per THE CONSTITUTION. This is not a “state issue”. Literally. By the bloody definition.
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    Best President in my lifetime. It would be great if he was recognized & honored sooner rather than later!
    Like (27)
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    Oh hell no, but the idiots in Illinois will, because they suck. Name an interstate after the worst president in history, good idea Illinois.🙄🙄
    Like (26)
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    Spend the money on school lunch!
    Like (25)
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    How about we legislate on important Federal government policy, like trying to make sure our debt does not spiral out of control with over excessive spending. Or how about making sure we can keep international shipping protected near Iran. Or how about making sure China adheres to international law on ballistic missile production. If a Federal congressman is more interested in remaining a highway, than he should be reminded what the Federal government’s main purpose is for.
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    Why? Why honorthe most racist, divisive president in the history of the US? This man single handedly pushed race relations back 20 years! On top of that, he committed several treasonous acts, and he's going to be found guilty of them soon. No, leave the name of that corridor alone, but don't name it after THIS idiot!
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    Presidents are always given this kind of honor. Seems like a great idea to me!
    Like (20)
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    No! Lincoln was the best President to come out of Illinois- Not Obama who was the worst
    Like (20)
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    What really outstanding thing did this President really do?
    Like (19)
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    Worst president ever. Name a pile of trash after him.
    Like (17)
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    If Reagan can have an airport after screwing the Air Traffic Controllers why would President Obama not have a portion of highway named after him!!!
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