WASHINGTON — Amtrak wants to become a major player in creating a national high-speed rail network, as states continue to jockey for funding from the federal government and potentially offer up their own bonds to help cover construction costs.

The board of directors of Amtrak, a 40-year-old national rail corporation that operates most of the country’s interstate passenger trains, voted last month to create a new department devoted to intercity high-speed rail corridors.

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