WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and other top Democrats leading the charge on the United Airlines passenger-removal scandal have accepted campaign donations from United Airlines’ political PAC.
The airline has a prominent lobbying operation in Washington. Past Schumer and Democratic initiatives to reform air travel were quickly shot down after the corporation got its lobbying muscle involved. The airline’s relationship with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle — including Democrats leading the charge to wrist-slap the airline — could crash the public’s chance to get any real concessions out of the embattled company.
United Airlines is under fire after video of police officers forcibly removing a man from his seat — due to alleged overbooking — went viral, with the money shot of the man’s bloodied face played endlessly on cable news and late-night TV. Washington is pretending to be very concerned about it.
Senator Schumer and fellow Democratic Sens. Dick Durbin, Brian Schatz, and Maggie Hassan took the lead in writing a letter to United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz expressing concern. The letter was signed by various other Democratic senators including Bob Menendez. But the letter failed to make some important disclosures.
The United Airlines Political Action Committee has doled out money to politicians on both sides of the aisle, including former Republican House Speaker John Boehner, current Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and former President Barack Obama, who took from the Chicago-based PAC in his first Senate run in 2004.
Schumer took $3,000 from the United Airlines PAC during the 2010 campaign cycle. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) also took $10,000 from the airline’s PAC that election year, during a period in which the DSCC was chaired by Menendez, who took over from Schumer in 2009.
But Durbin is the biggest hypocrite of the bunch. The Illinois Democrat has raked in campaign cash from the airline’s PAC in election cycles dating back to at least 1998. He took $4,000 in 2000, $5,500 in 2002, $5,000 in 2006, $5,000 in 2008, $3,000 in 2012, and $2,000 in 2014.
Durbin even gave a quote in 2002, when United was dealing with bankruptcy, calling it a “terrible tragedy” and adding, “I regret that the federal government, specifically the ATSB, refused to play a more constructive role in stabilizing United — the nation’s second largest airline — and protecting its nearly 80,000 jobs.”
At least Patty Murray, who took $8,000 from the PAC in 2010, and Cory Booker, who took $10,000 in 2014, did not join her fellow Democrats in signing the letter.
In order to get real airline reform, it seems like some lobbyists are going to have to be “re-accommodated” out of the Capitol building.
Josh Hawley Introduces Resolution Against China’s New National Security Law to Punish Hong Kong
Hawley is focusing intently on the red menace.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) introduced a resolution on Thursday to oppose China’s new national security law meant to punish Hong Kong and quash their ongoing rebellion against the totalitarian communist state.
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) May 21, 2020
Hawley has long been an advocate of Hong Kong freedom protesters throughout their struggle against Chinese tyranny, which has been sidelined in large part due to the ever-so-convenient Wuhan virus outbreak. Hawley visited Hong Kong last year to talk to the people on the ground and gave a rousing floor speech highlighting their historic struggle.
He said during his speech: “I want to share something that the reverend Chu Yiu-ming said about liberty about democracy. He says it so beautifully. These are his words: “We strive for democracy because democracy strives for freedom and equality and universal love. Political freedom is more than loyalty to a state. Political freedom professes human dignity. Every single person living in a community possesses unique potentials and unique powers capable of making a unique contribution to society.”’
“That’s extraordinary and he’s exactly right, and Hongkonger’s know it, and that’s what they’re standing for, and that’s what they’re fighting for,” Hawley added. “And, Mr. President, the people of Hong Kong deserve our support, and they are depending on our support.”
China announced yesterday that they were passing a edict meant to crush dissent in Hong Kong, with no input allowed from the city itself. China has paid lip service regarding Hong Kong’s autonomy for decades, but they are now removing the facade completely.
“Beijing has opted for the most risky route,” said Ho-Fung Hung, who works as a professor of international relations for Johns Hopkins University. “It will show the world that ‘one country, two systems’ is, if not already over, almost over.”
“It will be very difficult for anyone, especially the United States, to say Hong Kong is still autonomous and viable,” Hung added.
China is denying that they are taking control over Hong Kong and putting out communist propaganda that their Draconian power-grab will actually improve relations.
“We will ensure the long-term stability of ‘one country, two systems,’ ” said Wang Yang, leader of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, which convenes every year to advise the Chinese government.
“We will continue to support the improvement of the implementation of the systems and mechanisms of the constitution and Basic Law,” he added.
It is unlikely that anyone is willing to believe the Chinese lip service at this point. Hawley is also calling on the globalist United Nations to pass a resolution condemning China’s behavior as well.
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