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House Republicans unveil bill to privatize air traffic control

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Republican leaders of a U.S. House of Representatives transportation panel introduced a measure on Wednesday that would privatize the national air traffic control system, placing it under a private nonprofit group run by a range of stakeholders including airlines.

The measure, long-anticipated and controversial, was in a bill to authorize Federal Aviation Administration funding for six years and is seen by Republicans as a way to bring greater efficiency to commercial aviation and free the system now overseen by the FAA from budget uncertainties created by deficit reduction and partisan gridlock in Congress.

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But the legislation’s future is uncertain, with Democrats either opposed outright to the privatization effort or poised to introduce their own counter-measure. Privatization is also opposed by Delta Air Lines Inc, which has warned that such a move could lead to higher costs for air passengers.

Congress may also have difficulty undertaking major legislation before the November election, when voters will decide which party controls the White House and Congress.

“Our system is incredibly inefficient and it will only get worse as passenger levels grow and the FAA falls further behind in modernizing the system,” said U.S. Representative Bill Shuster, a Pennsylvania Republican who chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

(Reporting by David Morgan; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Grant McCool)

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Ted Cruz snaps at NBC’s Chuck Todd for ‘dragging up all that garbage’ Trump threw at him in 2016 campaign

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A "Meet the Press" interview with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) went sideways on Sunday when host Chuck Todd reminded the Trump defender of all the smears the president launched against him when they were both vying for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination.

With Cruz attempting to defend Donald Trump's honor with regard to his Ukraine scandal, the incredulous Todd brought up Trump attacking Cruz's wife, accusing him of an extramarital affair and saying he may not have been born in the U.S. during the 2016 campaign.

“I appreciate you dragging up all that garbage, that’s very kind of you,” Cruz shot back.

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2020 Election

Mike Bloomberg doesn’t understand he is part of the problem

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The entry of Michael Bloomberg, one the world’s wealthiest men, into the Democratic Presidential primary contest arrives at a moment when Earth is facing growing levels of obscene wealth concentration and income disparity.

This article first appeared in Salon

“Last year 26 people owned the same [amount of wealth] as the 3.8 billion people who make up the poorest half of humanity,” reported Oxfam International in 2018. According to the anti-poverty charity, in the decade since Wall Street’s pillaging of Main Street that induced the Great Recession, “the fortunes of the richest have risen dramatically” with the number of billionaires doubling.The former New York City mayor touts the amassing of his $55.4 billion fortune, starting from a $10-million-dollar buyout he got when he was fired from Salomon Brothers, as one of his top qualifications for the nation’s highest office.

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GOPer Collins battered for demand to postpone Trump impeachment so he can get caught up: ‘Collins doesn’t do his homework’

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On Saturday, Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA), the senior Republican on the House Judiciary Committee made a demand to the Democrats that they postpone Monday's hearing on the impeachment of Donald Trump, saying he needed more time to digest a fifty-plus page report that Democrats released over the weekend.

After tweeting out his demand -- as well as issuing a statement -- the voluble Trump defenders was hammered on his own Twitter feed with commenters telling him do his job and read the report in the meantime.

After Collins tweeted, "Chairman Nadler has no choice but to postpone Monday’s hearing in the wake of a last-minute document transmission that shows just how far Democrats have gone to pervert basic fairness," he got buried in derision.

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