Trump compares US infrastructure to that of a 'third-world country'

President Trump's full infrastructure speech
President Trump's full infrastructure speech

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President Trump's full infrastructure speech 05:56

Story highlights

  • Trump said US infrastructure has crumbled to the likeness of a "third-world country"
  • "Third World" is defined by Merriam-Webster Dictionary as "the aggregate of the underdeveloped nations of the world"

Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump compared the US' crumbling infrastructure to that of a third-world country while speaking at Trump Tower in New York on Tuesday afternoon.

"We used to have the greatest infrastructure anywhere in the world, and today we're like a third-world country. We're literally like a third-world country," Trump said, while touting his latest executive order, which he called the next step toward restoring the nation's infrastructure.
"My administration is working every day to deliver the world-class infrastructure that our people deserve, and frankly, that our country deserves," Trump announced beside Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao. "That's why I just signed a new executive order to dramatically reform the nation's badly broken infrastructure permitting process."
    Trump's definition of the US -- among the most developed nations in the world -- as being like a third-world nation when it comes to infrastructure echoed the statements of other US leaders over the past several years.
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    "We're like a third-world country when it comes to infrastructure," former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood said in 2016, during then-President Barack Obama's tenure.
    In 2014, Obama's Vice President Joe Biden said: "If I took you blindfolded and took you to LaGuardia Airport in New York, you must think 'I must be in some third-world country.'"
    The "third world" is defined as "the aggregate of the underdeveloped nations of the world," according to Merriam-Webster, and Dictionary.com adds: "especially those with widespread poverty."