Trump’s bluff might help save U.S. airline industry

President Trump literally wrote the book on the "Art of the Deal," but his latest bargaining chip to get a Congressional bill for a thin coronavirus stimulus for airlines has puzzled top Democrats.
House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi even went as far as to ask if he was suffering from the side effects of his ongoing coronavirus medical treatment.
Trump is pushing for a standalone bill to help both airlines and small businesses. "The House and Senate should IMMEDIATELY approve $ 25 billion in flight accounting support and $ 135 billion in the small business paycheck protection program. Both are paid in full with unused funds from the Cares Act. Got this money. I will sign now! "He tweeted late Tuesday night amid a flood of tweets last day.
Perhaps Trump was bluffing when he tweeted Tuesday that he would end coronavirus stimulus negotiations and drag stocks down. "I have instructed my representatives not to stop negotiations until after the election if we pass an important stimulus bill that focuses on hardworking Americans and small businesses immediately after my victory," he tweeted.
Pelosi was quick to respond, saying Trump "showed his true colors" and "refused to put money in workers' pockets unless his name is on the check."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California speaks during a weekly press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington on Thursday, October 1, 2020. (AP Photo / Jacquelyn Martin)
As airline relief negotiations continued on Wednesday, Pelosi appeared to indicate that she would be ready to help airlines. The Pelosi spokesman tweeted that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin asked Pelosi for a standalone airline bill. "The spokesman reminded him that the Republicans blocked this bill on Friday and asked him to review the DeFazio bill so they could have an informed conversation," the spokesman said.
Trump also pushed for a new round of stimulus checks for individuals. "If I get a separate bill for stimulus checks ($ 1,200), it goes IMMEDIATELY to our great people," he tweeted. But Pelosi has opposed the idea of ​​gradual tax support.
As the negotiations drag on, job losses in the US aviation industry continue to mount.
Delta Airlines (DAL) is the next major U.S. airline poised to employ thousands of people by Nov. 1 if lawmakers fail to reach an agreement with the White House to give the industry a $ 25 billion bailout Allow dollars.
In the absence of another round of financial relief, Delta is negotiating with the ALPA pilots union to avoid 1,721 pilots' vacation for the next month.
Although American (AAL) and United Airlines (UAL) laid off more than 32,000 employees last week, Southwest Airlines (LUV) reaffirmed its commitment to its employees to avoid layoffs or vacation until the end of the year.
A view of a Delta Airlines plane about to take off at La Guardia Airport on August 26, 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic. Delta Air Lines is slated to take leave of nearly 2,000 pilots in October, the report said. (Photo by: John Nacion / STAR MAX)
Gary Kelly, CEO of Southwest, had his base salary lowered to zero back in 2020 and will remain at that level through the end of next year. The airline's executive pay will be reduced by 20% through 2021.
While Kelly is saving its employees' jobs, the company said this week that its non-union workers would have wages cut by 10% through 2021. The airline hopes to convince the unions to make similar concessions.
Nicholas Calio, President and CEO of Airlines for America, said the industry was “disappointed that Congress and administration failed to reach an agreement that would save tens of thousands of high-quality, high-quality jobs in the US aviation industry. We will continue to encourage all parties to come back to the table and strike a deal. We have to keep that hope up, ”he said.
The aviation industry urgently needs tax support. The International Air Transport Association estimates that "despite a slightly more than 50% cost reduction in the second quarter, the industry spent $ 51 billion in cash as revenue decreased nearly 80% compared to the same period last year."
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