Wednesday, August 26, 2009
The Wall Street Journal's Middle Seat Terminal blog has a nice summary of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy's contribution to airline deregulation and the U.S. air transport industry as a whole. See Scott McCarthy, Kennedy Pushed Airline Deregulation, Changed U.S. Air Travel, Middle Seat Terminal Blog (Aug. 26, 2009) (available here). From the blog post:
Deregulating the airline industry was a major legislative achievement for Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, who pushed the issue even though he didn’t have jurisdiction over aviation and used his substantial charm and persuasiveness to change the way America travels.
In the early 1970s, Sen. Kennedy held extensive hearings as chairman of the Subcommittee on Administrative Practice and Procedure, pushing deregulation as a way to increase competition and bring affordable air travel to millions of Americans. At the time, the Civil Aeronautics Board, a government agency, set airline fares and routes, limiting competition and guaranteeing airlines’ profits. The hearings drew media attention and raised the profile of what had been a largely academic issue to major pro-consumer status.