United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby is ready to partner with the Biden Administration and sees three broad areas of potential cooperation.
United Airlines Embraces Biden Administration
Acknowledging the new administration on his social media channels, Kirby expressed his desire to work with the Biden-Harris Administration.
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Today marks the start of a new chapter for America. I’m ready to work with the Biden-Harris Administration to put the airline industry in the best position possible to recover from the pandemic so that we can get back to a place of growth, be a long-term career destination with good paying jobs and continue to connect our customers around the world.
In a subsequent paragraph, Kirby noted three common causes he would seek to partner with the new admiration on:
- A return to travel with testing programs, contact tracing, access to vaccines and touchless technology
- Sustainability and making green travel the standard, including air traffic modernization
- Diversity, equity and inclusion and closing opportunity gaps for all workers
While the second and third policy goal may be worded in a Democratic-friendly manner, all three goals actually enjoy bipartisan support.
In an unsigned note to employees entitled, “Ready to partner with the new administration,” United was much more direct:
On Wednesday, Joe Biden was sworn into office, becoming the 46th President of the United States. The new administration made a series of executive orders, including reentering the Paris Climate Agreement, reinforcing safety measurements to address the coronavirus pandemic, and removing prohibitions on diversity, equity and inclusion training in the workplace — all things that align with our priorities.
Kirby also reiterated these policy positions during an earnings call yesterday.
I also try to walk the nonpartisan line as much as possible, so I can understand why United would say one thing publicly and one thing privately. At the same time, I’m not sure how supporting the Paris Climate Agreement or “diversity, equity, and inclusion” training is such a surprise considering the other issues United has opted to take a public stance on, including a divisive California ballot proposition and its new carbon capture program.
Furthermore, it is no surprise that CEO Kirby and an airline reliant upon government funding would never try to rock the boat with the Biden Administration. In that sense, an airline is always for the administration in power.