Trump vows to back airlines ‘100 percent’

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President Trump on Monday said he will help the airlines, but didn’t explicitly commit to the roughly $50 billion in assistance the industry requested earlier in the day.

“We’re going to back the airlines 100 percent,” Trump said in the White House briefing room when asked whether he planned to offer assistance. “We’re going to be in a position to help the airlines very much.”

The airline industry, which has been struggling through a coronavirus epidemic that has upended travel and forced the cancellations of thousands of flights, called for Washington to provide grants, loans, and tax relief.

When asked about the request, Trump said, “We’re going to be looking at it very strongly.”

“It’s not their fault,” the president added.

U.S. airlines have taken drastic steps to cut back on flights.

Delta Air Lines is sidelining 300 planesAmerican Airlines is cutting international flights by 75 percent until May and reducing its domestic capacity in April by 20 percent, and United Airlines canceled 10 percent of U.S. flights in April and May.

There are at least 3,900 confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. and 68 deaths, according to data compiled by The New York Times.

Morgan Chalfant contributed to this report.

Tags Coronavirus Donald Trump

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