Mad Men Make Online Pitch for High Speed Rail

For Immediate Release


Phineas Baxandall, 617-747-4351
Dan Smith, 202-546-9707 x340

Mad Men Make Online Pitch for High Speed Rail

WASHINGTON - Two lead actors from the hit television show Mad Men throw their support behind high-speed rail in a humorous new online video posted today on

The actors and U.S. PIRG, a national advocacy organization, developed the video in conjunction with the popular online video site as a way to reach new audiences and build excitement for high-speed rail projects around the country.

“I am delighted to have worked with U.S. PIRG on this project to raise awareness about high-speed rail,” said Vincent Kartheiser, who plays Pete Campbell on the hit show. “Despite all of the actions I take to reduce my carbon footprint, I am a terrible polluter because I fly so many miles. High-speed rail is more efficient, convenient, and environmentally responsible than flying or driving.”

The video is set in the offices of a fictitious 60’s-era advertising agency, as the two make their best pitch for high-speed rail.

As “Harry” tells “Pete” in the video, “America always makes the right investments. Trains are the most efficient, most economical, best investment.”

“But, honestly, I think you can relax on this whole thing.  I read that in 40 years, gas is going to be almost a dollar a gallon,” he adds. 

The video comes at a time when high-speed rail debate is heating up throughout the country and in Congress. President Obama recently pledged more than $50 billion in federal funding over the next six years and announced a goal in his State of the Union to connect 80 percent of the country with high-speed rail in the next 25 years. House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica (R-FL) has been a supporter of high-speed rail, while his governor in Florida and the Governors of Ohio in Wisconsin have rejected billions in federal funds for projects in their states.
“It’s a simple pitch - high-speed rail saves oil and gives people a more efficient alternative to the hassles of flying and driving,” said Phineas Baxandall, Senior Tax and Budget Analyst for U.S. PIRG.  “Even 40 years ago it would have been a no-brainer.”

Click here to watch Mad Men on Trains.

Vincent Kartheiser is available for comment from 10 am to 1 pm ET on March 9th and from 9 am to noon PST on March 10th.  To reach him, contact Marshall Wright at (323)632-2003.


U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs), stands up to powerful special interests on behalf of the American public, working to win concrete results for our health and our well-being. With a strong network of researchers, advocates, organizers and students in state capitols across the country, we take on the special interests on issues, such as product safety,political corruption, prescription drugs and voting rights,where these interests stand in the way of reform and progress.

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