Amtrak chief Joseph Boardman says that despite its travails, passenger rail now has a friend in the White House. Speaking at a luncheon of the Midwest High Speed Rail Association, Boardman urged rail fans to "keep their vision" and noted as one encouraging example California's commitment to a starter 220-mph system. As for Amtrak, "we may not get to 220 quickly. We may not get there at all very fast. But maybe we'll get to 160," Boardman said.

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