Trump Says He's Been 'Very Strict' on the Airlines. The Opposite Is True.
President Donald Trump says his regulations on the airline industry have resulted in zero commercial aviation deaths in 2017. The president made his wholly unsubstantiated claim Tuesday morning via Twitter, after bragging repeatedly last year he has removed more federal government regulations than any president in history.
Since taking office I have been very strict on Commercial Aviation. Good news - it was just reported that there were Zero deaths in 2017, the best and safest year on record!â€” Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2018
Trump claims he's been "very strict" on the airlines, but there's zero proof of that. And in fact, from the start of his presidency, Trump promised airlines he would reduce regulations governing their operations.
"President Trump told a group of airline and airport executives Thursday that he would help them through reduced regulations and lower taxes," USA Today reported in early February, just weeks into Trump's term. In March CNBC reported "Trump met with airline CEOs last month, telling them he wants to roll back 'burdensome' regulations."
What has Trump done regarding airline travel?
Nothing to show he's been "very strict."
The Trump administration in 2017 actually was very lax with airline operators.
The Trump "Transportation Department's attitude toward consumer protection has shifted," The Washington Post reported just last week.
The agency delivered another wink to the industry when it dramatically reduced the number of regulatory enforcement actions taken against airlines last year. Only 18 consent orders were issued for $3.1 million in civil penalties compared with 29 orders worth $6.4 million for 2016.
And there's more.
The department hasn't implemented rules required by Congress that would allow families to sit together or regulations that would require airlines to refund checked-baggage fees when they lose passengers' luggage. "It's as if the police decided not to do their job," said Charles Leocha, chairman of Travelers United, a Washington passenger-advocacy group.
In early December Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao dropped an Obama-era proposed regulation that would have required airlines to disclose baggage fees at the start of the ticket purchasing process. And Trump's Transportation Department "has also failed to issue regulations mandated by Congress last year to require airlines to refund fees charged for checked bags that are delayed and to ensure families with young children can sit together on planes," Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) charges in the L.A. Times.
The Trump administration also dropped another Obama-era regulation, requiring airlines to disclose how many wheelchairs they break or lose. The rule was designed to help disabled passengers make decisions about which airlines to fly.
Trump hasn't been "very strict" on the airlines. Not one bit.
CNN's Chris Cillizza:
There hasn't been a death on a commercial flight in the US in 8 years https://t.co/CnwVTXRXuyâ€” Chris Cillizza (@CillizzaCNN) January 2, 2018
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