Chad Trautvetter AIN Online
Fury Continues Over Obama's 'Corporate Jets' Remark
October 9, 2012
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  • By Chad Trautvetter

    NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen, JSSI chairman Lou Seno and former Cessna chief Jack Pelton separately weighed in on President Obama’s remarks about “corporate jets” during the televised presidential debate last week. “Why wouldn’t we eliminate tax breaks for corporate jets?” Obama asked. “My attitude is if you got a corporate jet, you can probably afford to pay full freight, not get a special break for it.”

    After a lightning-quick rebuttal issued by NBAA before the debate even ended on Wednesday night, Bolen sent an open letter on Thursday to President Obama. “I’m writing to convey my frustration at your disparaging remarks about our industry during [Wednesday night’s] debate,” Bolen said. “Your comments seemed to illustrate a complete lack of understanding about the importance of business aviation in the U.S., and appear to be at odds with your stated interest in promoting job growth, stimulating exports, driving economic recovery and restoring America to its first-place position in manufacturing.”

    In conclusion, Bolen wrote, “Please consider promoting, rather than disparaging, business aviation–it’s a great American industry.”

    While Seno’s comments largely echoed those of Bolen, Pelton brought the issue to a local level by penning a letter to Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer (D), who attended the Democratic National Convention last month. Pelton asked the mayor to educate others in his party about the positive effect that the business jet industry has on jobs and the economy in the U.S. In response, Brewer pledged to “continue to defend the aviation industry and will make every effort to take our message to our President.”