06.04.2024 0

Senator Cruz leads way in winning one for the little guy in FAA Reauthorization

By Rick Manning

Aviation is one area where the federal government rightfully has primacy and Senator Ted Cruz proved that he has become a legislator adept at getting bills passed while protecting Americans’ freedoms with the FAA Reauthorization Act.

Hidden deep in the text of the final legislation is a small business protection which will go unnoticed and matters a great deal to those of us who believe that government should not use its coercive power to shutter lawful businesses.

As Americans for Limited Government has written about in the past, the original legislation that passed through the House of Representatives which would have ended the businesses of a few entrepreneurs who risked their capital to build a computer system to accommodate the resale of airplane tail numbers.

Under the existing and surviving law, anyone can buy airplane tail numbers (also known as N-numbers) for $10 a piece.  Entrepreneurs figured out that shorter N-numbers were more valuable than longer ones due to scarcity, and proceeded to pay the $10 fee for these more desirable numbers offering them on the open market for a higher price.  And airplane owners proved themselves willing to pay more for a shorter number rather than purchasing one of the hundreds of thousands of longer numbers readily available for $10. 

So what was the problem? Someone decided that this practice must be stopped even as the federal government benefitted from it.

Without Senator Cruz’ firm hand for limited government, these entrepreneur’s businesses would have been destroyed, even though they are making more money for the U.S. Treasury by adding their tax payments on top of the $10 FAA fee that would have been paid either way. 

Senator Cruz proved once again, that he will stand up for the little guy even when no one is really looking, and was consistent to the view that conservatives don’t come to Congress to find ways to use the power of big government to shut down honest businesses, just because they can. Using his skill, expertise and power, Cruz negotiated a change to the language that leaves the system alone as it is studied for future consideration, a reasonable compromise.

At Americans for Limited Government we regularly are fighting for or against dozens of pieces of legislation and regulations that either limit or expand government power.  Winning a change in legislation that impacts only a few people might seem insignificant. But, winning this victory sends a clear signal to the Biden FAA that they are limited in their power. 

And every American can thank Senator Ted Cruz along with Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Rick Scott (R-FL), as well as Representative Scott Perry (R-PA) for fighting for the little guy. After all it is often said that you measure character by what people do when no one is looking, not by what they say, and these four legislators met this test with flying colors.

Senator Cruz played an instrumental role in shepherding through the bi-partisan reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration, legislation which helped make our skies more secure investing billions in major safety, technological upgrades of airports in Texas and protecting small businesses and around the nation.

And every once in a while It is nice to be able to say, with leaders like Cruz, Blackburn, Scott and Perry, we can fight city hall or even Capitol Hill and the Biden bureaucracy and win.

The author is president of Americans for Limited Government.

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