Flight attendants union: Mica 'loses tenuous grip on reality' with FAA bill

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"What kind of leader resorts to name calling? One with no defense for his actions," it stated. "The ‘abuse of leadership in Washington,’ DC can be laid squarely at the feet of Mica and his ideological colleagues, who put over 75,000 people out of work in their zeal for busting unions.”

Shook has argued that a disagreement between the chambers over union rules was the true cause of the impasse that shut down the FAA. Those rule changes would make it easier for airline and railroad employees to vote to collectively bargain.

She made the case again Tuesday, saying “It takes a strange combination of blind ideology, outright nerve and disregard for the principles of our country to assert that union members standing up for fair elections and a voice in the workplace are 'duped tools.' 

"This is the man who is acting as Delta Air Lines’ pawn by advancing a union-busting provision and threatening another shutdown of the FAA," she said. "Mica’s contempt for workers and the 75,000 people who were out of work due to the partial shutdown of the FAA is feeding Delta’s grossly funded union busting scheme. Mica is treating hopeful voters as 'duped tools,' for ever believing that our elected officials wouldn’t let an unrelated labor provision destroy the jobs and infrastructure benefits delivered by a larger FAA Reauthorization bill.”

Although Mica placed blame for shutting down the FAA on Democrats for objecting to cuts to subsidies to rural airports, Mica has not denied pushing so hard for the cuts to gain a tactical advantage in negotiations with the Senate.

He was unapologetic again in the interview mentioned by Shook.

"I will use every means possible to get a long-term, four-year reauthorization," Mica told Florida radio station WMFE. "After four and a half years of Democrat delay, we will find a way to make one of most important transportation agencies function and also compete in the global international aviation market."

The AFA's parent union, the Communication Workers of America (CWA), said Wednesday a campaign to raise awareness about the FAA funding situation. The campaign, dubbed the "Countdown to Shutdown" will target passengers at airports in Atlanta; Seattle; Dallas; San Francisco; Portland, Ore.; Charlotte, N.C.; Philadelphia; and Phoenix. 

The union said members will pass out fliers to travelers and call members of Congress.

The nearly two-week partial shutdown of the FAA was projected to have cost the federal government $30 million per day as taxes on airplane ticket sales that are normally paid were not authorized to be collected until Congress passed a funding bill for the FAA.

In addition to the furloughed FAA employees, about 70,000 construction employees were also estimated to have been put out of work when airport construction projects were stalled during the impasse.