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  • Writer's pictureNorth Shore Democrats of Travis County

Biden wants airlines to refund automatically for cancelled flights; airline-bankrolled Ted Can-Cruz is fighting it

By Mike Killalea, NSD president

The Biden Administration has announced a new rule promising that passengers will automatically receive refunds on tickets for flights that were cancelled or significantly delayed.

But Ted Can-Cruz, and three other lawmakers heavily supported by the airline industry have introduced a bill that potentially reimposes cumbersome processes on passengers. (1,2)

The proposed rule requires that passengers be automatically reimbursed without having to “navigate a patchwork of cumbersome processes to request and receive a refund, searching through airline websites to figure out how make the request, filling out extra ‘digital paperwork,’ or at times waiting for hours on the phone.” (2)

But just days after that announcement generated celebratory headlines, four congressional lawmakers overseeing aviation policy began advancing legislation that includes a provision potentially reimposing those cumbersome processes on passengers, according to the bill text reviewed by The Lever. (2)

The lawmakers — Can-Cruz, Sen Maria Cantrell (D-Wash), Rep Sam Graves (R-Mo), and Rep Rick Larsen (D-Wash) — introduced a new Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization deal that would require passengers to send a “written or electronic request” in order to receive a full refund for a canceled or significantly delayed flight. (2,3,4,5)

The lawmakers are four of the six largest congressional recipients of campaign cash from the airline industry in the current election cycle, according to The Lever, reporting on data from the government transparency group OpenSecrets. 

Ted whines about Allred donations

In other Can-Cruz news, Teddy was on Fox News recently whining about his opponent’s fundraising prowess. 

“My opponent a liberal Democrat named Colin Allred, is out raising Beto O’Rourke, my last opponent, 3 to 1,” complained Ted Can-Cruz. (5)

Poor Ted. He apparently forgot about the $10 million he raked in during the first quarter. (6)

Scandal, scandal, scandal

Cruz’s fundraising concerns may explain a very shady financial arrangement the senator has with iHeartMedia, the hosting platform of his podcast Verdict with Ted Cruz. Last week, the Houston Chronicle reported that the radio network paid out $630,850 to a Cruz-affiliated super PAC. (5,7)

According to FEC data reviewed by the Chronicle, the six-figure sum represents about a third of the PAC’s fundraising haul since 2023.

The LoseCruz PAC, a political action committee challenging the senator’s reelection, first reported a $214,752.98 transfer from iHeartMedia to Truth and Courage in March. (8)

Top ‘Dem for Cruz’ awash in sex, financial scandals

Can-Cruz fears for his seat, and seeks to soften his image as a conservative hardliner and recast himself as a bipartisan lawmaker unafraid to reach across the aisle.

Is that ridiculous or what?

Unfortunately for Ted, one of the top figures he’s recruited for his “Democrats for Cruz” group has been accused of crossing far more serious lines. (9,10)

After The Daily Beast reported that one of Ted Cruz’s top campaign surrogates “faced claims of inappropriate behavior toward female staffers,” a new report in the San Antonio Express-News digs deep into the problems surrounding Cruz’s “Democrats for Cruz” campaign, underscoring just another reason why Cruz is only out for himself, not Texans.

Javier Palomarez, the leading Democrat supporting Ted Cruz in the recent “Democrats for Cruz” campaign, recently faced scandals and drama with allegations of improperly paying himself hundreds of thousands of dollars while head of the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, leading to a resignation and sexual harassment allegations, according to a report from the New York Times in 2018.

After the investigation, six members of the board’s executive committee voted to give Palomarez a chance to resign within a week and repay the chamber a negotiated amount of money. At that point, the organization estimated the overpayment at $500,000 to $600,000, according to the board minutes, the New York Times reported. 

Is this the best. you can do, Ted?


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