(CNSNews.com) – Two Republican congresswoman had blunt words for President Joe Biden and his “unqualified” transportation secretary on Wednesday, as thousands of Southwest Airlines travelers remain stranded, separated from their luggage, or both.
Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) said the weather-induced flight debacle hit close to home for her, as her teenage children “got stranded in Baltimore trying to make it home on Christmas Eve. And even today, five days later, we still don’t know where their luggage is right now,” Mace told Fox News on Wednesday night.
“This has impacted thousands upon thousands of people,” she said.
“And I was disheartened and disappointed to hear the president — basking in the Caribbean during this crisis — could not be any more tone deaf right now. Because this has affected tens of thousands of people that can’t get on trains, can’t rent cars, can’t recoup their flights to get home. They’re stranded all across the country right now.
“I want to hear (Transportation Secretary) Pete Buttigieg say he’s going to audit and figure out where the $7 billion went that Southwest received from American taxpayers. That’s what I want to hear tonight.”
Appearing with Mace, Rep. Beth Van Duyne (R-Texas) said, “It’s not just that Biden that goes on vacation when he’s most needed. You look at Buttigieg — from the beginning, this guy was not qualified to take this job. He’s a Cabinet secretary.
“And in his first year in the office, we were having tremendous supply chain issues, people can’t get the supplies that they need, when businesses are going bankrupt, where is he? He takes two months off for paternity leave.
“Earlier this year, we had the rail strike, potential, looming over us. We were going to have, again, a massive amount of hit to our economy, you were going to have municipalities that couldn’t get chemicals to be able to treat their water supply. And where was Pete? Oh, that’s right. He was on a family vacation in Portugal. He could not be bothered not to go on vacation — to postpone that for the American people.
“This is a man who was not qualified for the job, has never really been on the job. And we’ve trusted him with $1.2 trillion worth of taxpayer dollars, and you’re seeing how he has just completely fallen on his face, time and time again.”
Mace promised that the House Transportation and Oversight Committees, on which she sits, will “have lots of questions” for Buttigieg.
“He’s going to have a lot to answer for when he comes to Congress.
“What is he doing with the taxpayer dollars that have been received, how are they being distributed. How is he going to hold Southwest accountable? And what you’re seeing today is the federal government rewarding bad behavior by having a private company be bailed out and subsidized by the American taxpayer.
“So what is Pete Buttigieg going to do about it, besides hold a press conference?” she asked.
President Biden has not issued any statement or tweet on the Southwest Airlines meltdown. Buttigieg has promised to hold Southwest “accountable” for failing to live up to its written customer service plan.
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