ALPA COLUMN AND A4A SUPPORT THEREOF SHOULD CAUSE THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES TO ENDORSE IT AT TOMORROW’S DEBATE—10,000,000 VOTERS AT ISSUE

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ARTICLE: Everything Matters: November 6

Captain Lee Moak, President
Air Line Pilots Association, International

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Captain Moak writes in his President’s Corner that the decision made by individual voters on November 6 matters. He starts his column by relating the details of an interesting speech by Emirates Airlines President Tim Clark in which the head of that dynamic airline attributes some of his company’s success to “the Dubai government’s progressive and unrelenting policy support for aviation”. From that observation, Captain Moak reiterates ALPA’s position that the United States government needs to adopt a similar national aviation policy.

Oddly, an organization which frequently is at loggerheads with ALPA, A4A, has articulated a similar call for the Administration’s establishment of principles that will guide the US aviation actions US aviation actions.

The ALPA column and the A4A position AGREE that aviation taxes need to be reduced.

That both organizations/frequent opponents have that degree of consensus on two major issues is extremely rare. Neither has publically endorsed either candidate; perhaps hoping to get a commitment on these two points.

Politicians scan the horizon of policy issues to find positions which might be supported and which will attract large blocks of voters. If President Obama or Governor Romney would support a national aviation policy and a reduction in taxes on airlines, they would get the endorsement of A4A and ALPA. Neither Presidential aspirant has adopted either an aviation policy or reduced airline tax plank as of yet.

At the first Presidential debate, no direct positive reference was made to aviation. Tomorrow the candidates will discuss foreign and domestic policy. The floor of Hofstra University (ironically until recently an institution bearing the moniker “Flying Dutchmen”) would be an opportune venue to capture the votes of nearly 10 million American people employed in this business, the support of a major union and of a powerful trade association and of the passengers who pay those taxes.

Watch Tuesday night to see if some political demographic expert on the candidates’ staffs sees the potential gain of 10 million PLUS voters.

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