(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
Congress has left town until after the Labor Day weekend leaving the Federal Aviation Agency unfunded. Because the Republican controlled house hates unions and workers, they are holding the FAA hostage on behalf of Delta Airlines. This effects 4,000 FAA employees who have been furloughed, 70,000 contracted construction workers laid off and the loss of $1 billion in tax revenue that will not be collected on ticket sales. While air traffic controllers will continue on the job with pay, safety inspectors are expected to work unpaid. All this because Delta Airlines is in a dispute with workers who want to unionize. Even worse is that most of these workers will be not have health care insurance to take care of themselves or their families.
Lawmakers in both houses of Congress have passed an FAA authorization bill. The particulars are in the range of 90% the same. While they work something out on the last 10%, they could pass an extension of the old authorization, the way they have 20 times since 2007. But House Republicans want to make it harder for Delta’s workers to unionize. They want to mandate that any absent voter in a union election is a vote against the union. They haven’t yet applied this to their own elections, but that’s how they want unions to operate. The NLRB passed regulations that would ban this practice, and Delta simply won’t allow votes for its workers under the new rules. And Republicans have hijacked the FAA on behalf of Delta.
That’s the real battle behind the FAA authorization, and the main reason that agency is partially shut down right now. The House passed an extension that basically punished rural airports in the states of the main Senate negotiators on the bill. But Harry Reid was actually willing to accept them yesterday and pass the extension. Senate Republicans blocked it by denying unanimous consent.
From Rachel Maddow:
Rachel outlines the damage being done in term of jobs and wated public money while the FAA awaits authorization from Congress.
The tea partying Republicans don’t give a rat’s butt about the over 74,000 workers who will add to the unemployment figures this month. Their only concern is the interests of a high flying CEO that contributes heavily to their campaign chests.
The tea partying republicans hate America and are worse than any terrorist group that uses explosives to take lives and destroy this country.