Taking Flight: Regulating Our Skies
On Thursday, June 7, The Washington Post held the first in a series of live, news events bringing together policymakers, elected officials, industry leaders and other experts for a timely discussion about the future of the aviation industry. Speakers discussed funding for the Federal Aviation Administration and other government agencies, the latest proposals from Capitol Hill and the Trump administration that could affect the airline industry.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao discussed the administration’s priorities when it comes to the aviation sector, how her department works together with agencies like the FAA and the Transportation Security Administration to ensure the safety and security of the traveling public and what major challenges and opportunities the Department of Transportation faces as we look ahead.
A View from the Hill
The chairman and ranking member of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security discuss the latest proposals from Capitol Hill that could affect the airline industry.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), the committee’s ranking Democrat, discuss the latest proposals from Capitol Hill that could affect the airline industry.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), the committee’s ranking Democrat, discuss what Congress can do to protect against cybersecurity threats on U.S. critical infrastructure.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), the committee’s ranking Democrat, discuss the Next Generation Air Transportation System, or NextGen, the FAA-led modernization of America's air transportation system.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security and Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), the committee’s ranking Democrat, comment on whether they think the government and the airline industry are doing enough to protect airline passengers' rights.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
Chairman, U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security
Sen. Roy Blunt was elected to the United States Senate in 2010. He serves on the Appropriations Committee; the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee; the Select Committee on Intelligence; and the Senate Rules Committee. He is the Chairman of the Rules Committee and Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. He is also the Chairman of the Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation.
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.)
Ranking Member, U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) currently serves as a United States Senator for the State of Washington. She was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2000, 2006 and again in 2012. She is the Ranking Member on the Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety and Security. 
Moderated by Sean Sullivan
Sean Sullivan is a national political reporter for The Washington Post.
Planes, Passengers and Airports: The Regulatory Landscape
Senior leaders from groups representing the interests of airports, passengers and the aviation industry address a range of regulatory questions impacting airline and airport operations and passenger experience.
Kevin M. Burke, president and CEO of Airports Council International-North America, Paul Hudson, president of FlyersRights.org and Sean Kennedy, senior vice president of global government affairs for Airlines for America, address a range of regulatory questions impacting airline and airport operations and passenger experience.
Kevin Burke of Airports Council International-North America discusses why he thinks modernization of airport infrastructure will benefit the consumer and enhance customer experience.
Kevin M. Burke, president and CEO of Airports Council International-North America, Paul Hudson, president of FlyersRights.org and Sean Kennedy, senior vice president of global government affairs for Airlines for America, debate the FAA Reauthorization Bill, which includes provisions to regulate the minimum standards for the size of airplane seats.
Kevin M. Burke
President and CEO, Airports Council International-North America
Kevin M. Burke joined Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) as President and Chief Executive Officer in January of 2014. Since he joined, Burke has expanded ACI-NA’s reach and influence as the Voice of Airports® in North America by amplifying the important role airports play in our everyday lives, unifying the industry behind shared priorities, and advancing a common cause with non-traditional allies.
Paul Hudson
President, FlyersRights.org
Paul Hudson has been a public interest advocate for over 30 years: In the 1970s in energy and utility policy, in the 1980s for crime victim rights and in the 1990s to 2012 for air travelers and terrorist victims (leading the Pan Am 103/Lockerbie bombing victim family organization and the Aviation Consumer Action Project (ACAP)).
Sean Kennedy
Senior Vice President, Global Government Affairs, Airlines for America
Sean Kennedy joined Airlines for America (A4A) as Senior Vice President, Global Government Affairs in July 2011. A key member of the A4A leadership team, Kennedy co-leads government affairs with a focus on increasing the advocacy reach and lobbying capabilities of the organization. Before joining A4A, Kennedy was Special Assistant to President Barack Obama for Legislative Affairs, working with moderate Democrats and Republicans to form coalitions.
Moderated by Lori Aratani
Lori Aratani is a transportation reporter for The Washington Post.
One-on-One with the U.S. Secretary of Transportation
A closer look at the administration’s priorities in the aviation sector and how the Department of Transportation works with agencies like the FAA and the TSA to ensure the safety and security of the traveling public.
The Washington Post’s Robert Costa sits down with U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao to take a closer look at the administration’s priorities in the aviation sector and how the Department of Transportation works with agencies like the Federal Aviation Administration and the Transportation Security Administration to ensure the safety and security of the traveling public.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao discusses the administration’s proposal to privatize the nation’s Air Traffic Control system, which was scrapped earlier in the year by House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.).
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao comments on what her department is doing to ensure passenger safety and monitor aircraft repair stations after a passenger was killed on a Southwest flight in April 2018.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao comments on her brother-in-law, Gordon Hartogensis, who was nominated to direct the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, an agency of the U.S. Department of Labor. Chao says, "I don't think anybody's relations or relatives should be held against them."
The Washington Post's Robert Costa asks U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao whether President Donald Trump has changed since he took office in January 2017.
Elaine Chao
U.S. Secretary of Transportation
Secretary Elaine Chao is currently the U. S. Secretary of Transportation. This is her second Cabinet position. She previously served as U.S. Secretary of Labor from 2001 until January 2009. Early in her career, she specialized in transportation financing in the private sector. She began her executive career in public service working on transportation and trade issues at the White House.
Interviewed by Robert Costa
Robert Costa is a national political reporter for The Washington Post.
Content from Delta Air Lines
Heather Wingate, senior vice president of government affairs for Delta Air Lines, delivers sponsor remarks during The Washington Post’s “Taking Flight: Regulating Our Skies” live event.
About Washington Post Live
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