By Mark Vargas, Editor-in-Chief
Over the holidays, Southwest Airlines canceled nearly 17,000 flights due to staffing shortages, severe weather and outdated computer systems. The debacle cost the airlines nearly $825 million according to regulatory filings.
But don’t worry – all is well at Southwest. No one was fired for the historic debacle and several Southwest executives have even been promoted since the holiday nightmare.
What a way to reward incompetence. Sounds like Don Tracy and the IL GOP are running Southwest’s operations.
And where’s Pete Buttigieg?
Giving media interviews saying they are all making “tons of progress.” And promising that Southwest passengers will get reimbursed for flights, ground and hotel expenses.
Two weeks later, Southwest passengers are still waiting for their luggage and refunds. It’s no wonder their stock is plummeting and angry passengers – some of whom missed the holidays with family while camped out at the airport, are planning to file lawsuits.
Buttigieg is starting to sound like Don Tracy in his weekly chairman’s memo where he continues to highlight all of the many successes Illinois Republicans had this past election and all the progress we’ve made as a party in the last year – despite humiliating losses that have left Republicans irrelevant and voiceless on local and state matters.
And on Wednesday morning, Americans woke up to the news that every domestic flight was grounded until 9:00 am ET because of a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) computer issue, causing more than 9,000 delays and 1,300 cancellations.
And where’s Pete Buttigieg?
Giving media interviews saying that, “glitches and complications happen all the time.”
Buttigieg continued his media blitz adding a positive spin to the second historical disaster under his watch, saying that the massive disruption “gives us a really important data point, at a really important moment, to understand what we’re going to need moving forward.”
Again, it sounds like Don Tracy and the IL GOP are running Transportation and the FAA, too.
And perhaps Buttigieg can follow Tracy’s lead and publish a weekly secretary’s memo that can hit your inbox after 5:00 pm CT every Friday night – when nobody’s paying attention to their emails.
And although President Biden has ordered a full investigation to get to the bottom of the computer issue that resulted in a nationwide grounding off all aircraft, the point remains the same: bad leadership leads to bad outcomes.
Conservative Illinois Republicans and the country are now on the same page. It’s time for both Buttigieg and Tracy to go.
And Republican US Sen. Ted Cruz agrees that it’s time for Buttigieg and the head of the FAA to go too.
As the top Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee, which oversees aviation issues, Cruz said early Wednesday that the FAA computer issue “is completely unacceptable and just the latest example of [US DOT] dysfunction.”
Cruz even went a step further, saying,
“The public needs a competent, proven leader” at the FAA.
Conservative Illinois Republicans couldn’t agree more. We also need a “competent, proven leader” in charge of the Republican Party of Illinois. And while Buttigieg oversees historic transportation disasters, Tracy oversees historic election losses.
And it’s time for both to go.