Air traffic control furloughs: 'Manufactured crisis'
WASHINGTON — As delayed flights jammed up air travel, Senate Republicans on Tuesday blamed the White House for furloughing air traffic controllers, as Democrats offered a proposal to replace the sequester cuts that have begun to affect ordinary Americans who need services from the federal government.
Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, called the problems in airports a “manufactured crisis.” Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, called it “phony and contrived.”
“It just smells of politics,” said Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., as the senators urged the administration to find savings elsewhere in the Department of Transportation budget and put the air traffic controllers back to work. He suggested cutting other Federal Aviation Administration employees.
“You can only conclude, just like the — shutting down the White House tours during spring break — it's meant to impact in a most negative way possible on the air traveling public,” Thune said.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., proposed using money saved from ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to replace the sequester cuts, an offer that is likely to be rejected by Republicans, who have often dismissed the idea as a gimmick because the conflicts were already planned to end under the Obama administration.
The Senate may try to vote to advance Reid's bill later this week.
The sequester cuts began in March when Democrats and Republicans failed to devise a compromise approach to trimming deficits. The sequester slices $85 billion through Sept. 30, and had been considered a last-ditch option that was so unpopular it would push the lawmakers to the table to negotiate a solution. That never happened.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Congress approves 1-week funding measure for Homeland Security
- Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu rejects Jewish House Democrats’ invitation
- Rep. Schock of Illinois shoulders $40K cost of office renovation
- Obama pitches privacy bill, Democrats say
- More Indian tribes rethink idea of legalized marijuana on reservations
- Suspects’ search of victims’ homes OK’d in Colorado
- Why would GOP candidate for Missouri governor Schweich kill himself?
- Mo. gunman kills 7, self, in rampage
- Attorney General Holder backs change in civil rights law
- 8 shot to death, including gunman, in Missouri rampage
- Senate deal sets up vote to fund Homeland Security