Flight delays: Congress lies once again to Americans

Latest poll shows that almost no Americans know of anyone affected by airport delays, despite Congress’ claims to the contrary. Photo: United takes off from Seattle-Takoma Airport AP photo

WASHINGTON, April 29, 2013 — In your heart of hearts, you always knew you could not trust them. How many times has Congress lied, misrepresented or distorted the truth? Too many to count, right? And then they wonder why Americans hold them in such low regard.

Now they have done it again, lying about how furious the average American is about airport delays. Remember last week in that flurry of bi-partisan energy when Congress suddenly stomped its collective feet in outrage at the sequestration’s hardship on we poor Americans, thanks to long flight delays.

Members of Congress of both parties pounded the podium. They emoted at length at how they were moved by the plight of the average American, trapped in endless delays at the airport. All thanks to the evil sequestration that they themselves had imposed. They ranted and railed against the FAA. They accused the White House of playing politics.

But Congress was above such dubious ploys. They were men and women of the people. They had heard our fury about the difficulties that such delays were causing us. They were elected to do the people’s will and, by George, they would do it.

And so they passed the exception to the sequestration cuts that sliced deeply into government services across the board, with all sectors feeling the pain equally. It was called the “FAA budget flexibility” bill and it ended furloughs at our airports by moving FAA funds from one budget area to another.

However, it turns out that it was all malarkey. Today, Rasmussen released a poll it conducted through a national telephone survey and found that only 16% of all American adults knew of anyone who was affected by airport delays. Rasmussen did find wealthier Americans were more likely to have been impacted, but we all know the upper incomes are less than 5% of the population. So who is most affected by such delays?

Why none other than members of Congress who fly home on a regular basis, that is who. They are off this week for another break from working in Washington. Time to unwind, visit home and take jaunts abroad to study some thing or other. All of which require flying. No waits at the airport for them.

The White House called it a “Band-Aid solution” that does not “solve the bigger problem.” However, President Obama said he will sign the legislation that Congress fast-tracked. Guess he wanted it both ways.

To contact Catherine Poe, see above. Her work appears in Ad Lib at the Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. She can also be heard on Democrats for America’s Future. She is also a contributor to broadcast, print and online media.


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Catherine Poe

Catherine was named one of the top Progressives in Maryland along with Senator Barbara Mikulski and Congresswoman Donna Edwards. She has been a guest of President Obama in the Rose Garden.

As past president of Long Island NOW, she worked to reform women's prisons in New York, open the construction trades to women, change laws to safeguard battered women, and protect the rights of rape victims. 

Long active in Democratic politics, she served as the presidentof the Talbot Democrats in Maryland for six years and fought to getthe Health Care Reform bill passed.

Catherine has been published in a diverse range of newspapers and magazines, including Newsday, Star Democrat, Rocky Mountain News, Yellowstone News, and the Massachusetts Review.

If Catherine has learned anything over the years it is that progressive change does not come easily, but in baby steps. 

Contact Catherine Poe

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