With tens of thousands of Americans stranded at airports in the middle of the holiday season, Transportation Secretary Buttigieg found himself under pressure from both parties.
Southwest Airlines canceled 62% of their scheduled flights, amounting to over 2.5k in total, and they’ve announced this trend will continue towards the end of the week.
Both parties shed criticism on Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg
Both Democrats and GOP officials have demanded the Department of Transportation respond to the flight cancellations and hold the company accountable for its handling of the situation.
Retweet if you think Pete Buttigieg is the WORST Transportation Secretary in United States history.
— Mayra Flores (@MayraFlores2022) December 29, 2022
This way, the damaged customers will receive full refunds and accommodations while they wait for the next flight.
Bernie Sanders took to his Twitter account to express his feelings about the current holiday fiasco, claiming the delays and cancellations are unacceptable, especially during this time of the year.
He added that Southwest Airlines has a $7 billion bailout from taxpayers and their wealthier shareholders will still receive $428 million in dividends, despite the incident.
This sort of greed and incompetence isn’t something the American people signed up for, especially those looking to spend New Year’s Eve with their loved ones.
Things are made worse by the fact that Buttigieg “assured” everyone airline transport would change for the better by the time the holidays rolled around.
A good Transportation Secretary competently does their job and remains relatively unknown. Pete Buttigieg seems to be all over the media despite a supply chain crisis and air travel meltdown. This job is beyond his abilities. He’s a loser who should have no political future.
— Eric Matheny 🎙 (@EricMMatheny) December 29, 2022
Buttigieg needs to set his priorities straight
The co-chair for Sanders’ 2020 campaign, Nina Turner, believes Buttigieg’s oversized ambitions are to blame for what we’re currently dealing with.
She went on to put a lot of blame on the secretary, claiming making a small-town mayor the Secretary of Transportation was done solely to pad Buttigieg’s resume.
Senator Maria Cantwell joined in on the criticism. She released a statement earlier this week, declaring an update has to be made to federal rules if we want to prevent disasters like this from repeating in the future.
She explained airline passengers deserve access to proper communication with the airline, as well as strong protections and an updated refund rule in the case of a cancellation.
This isn’t exactly news for Buttigieg, though; he’s been the target of Republican criticism for over a year, as conservatives claimed him to be unfit for the job he’s been given.
Pete Buttigieg was selected as Transportation Secretary because he is gay, proving yet again that being gay is not a job qualification.
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) December 29, 2022
When the railroad unions were threatening a strike in September, he was off duty, vacationing in Europe; when we were facing supply chain shortages last year, he was on paternity leave with his husband.
On the other hand, Representative Nancy Mace barely got to see her kids this Christmas because of the delays while Buttigieg twiddled his fingers, incapable of forcing Southwest to fix the chaos they’ve caused.
It took the department four days to speak up, much to the dismay of the tens of thousands of stranded passengers at airports in the midst of the holiday season.This article appeared in The Record Daily and has been published here with permission.