Thursday, November 6, 2008

Miss Liberal? No, Miss I Have Job Security...

I voted for President Elect Obama for a multitude of reasons; the most important to me was job security. I found this article on the USA Today aviation blog discussing the impending Obama presidency on my industry. So what does Obama mean for those who fly?:

That's the question tackled by Bloomberg News, which writes the election of Barack Obama could mean higher labor costs, less overseas outsourcing, no changes to foreign-ownership laws and fewer route auctions.

Analysts and union officials suspect the Obama administration could act on a variety of labor initiatives that could work to the advantage of airline unions. Andrew Steinberg, a former transportation assistant secretary under President George W. Bush, tells Bloomberg he thinks some potential labor-friendly actions under the new administration could prove "significant" in giving unions leverage in talks over wage increases and work rules. On that note, Ed Wytkind, president of the AFL-CIO's transportation trades department, tells Bloomberg: "We would expect an Obama administration would live up to its strong commitment to not only support, but strengthen, the collective bargaining right of workers."

Elsewhere, Bloomberg says that while labor groups may get a boost, airlines may now find "it easier to protect New York flights with Barack Obama as president. … A Bush transportation priority this year has been to auction off as many as 10% of airlines' takeoff and landing rights at the three major New York airports, where flights are capped to curb delays. The Bush administration says the auctions will boost competition." However, Bloomberg claims a majority of Congress members oppose that plan, and Roger Cohen -– president of the Regional Airline Association –- tells the news service that he thinks Obama won't be as "driven by ideology" on the subject and may choose not to spar with lawmakers.

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