Sen. Hutchison Slams House GOP For Shutting Down FAA: "It's Not Fiscally Responsible And It's Not Honorable"

August 02, 2011 12:48 pm ET

From the August 1, 2011, session of the U.S. Senate:

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SEN. KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON: The House has sent over a bill that has an Essential Air Service amendment that also has not been negotiated, but what they're negotiating on is the National Mediation Board. Well if that's confusing, there's a reason: because it's confusing! So why don't we un-confuse, and have a conference committee like we normally do here, and let's hash out these issues. If we had a chance to actually have a conference, negotiate all the issues, and then if someone's not satisfied, there are procedures that are honorable to blow up a bill that you don't like. But Mr. President, it is not honorable for the House to send an extraneous amendment on an FAA extension, and shut down airports that are being repaired and built in our country, jeopardizing an estimated 75,000 jobs, jeopardizing the certification of a major new airplane that wants to get out there and start being used, and an airport trust fund, an aviation trust fund that will lose over a billion dollars because we're not collecting the tax, and the airlines are pocketing the money by having a higher ticket charge, mostly, they may not all be doing that, but most of them are. And Mr. President, that's just not right. And we're gonna have to make that up because there are contracts pending that are gonna have to be paid for. It's not fiscally responsible and it's not honorable, and it's time for us to pass a clean extension of the FAA. Let's negotiate until September 30, and then if we can't agree we won't sign a conference report and it won't come back.


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