Nearly every member of the Illinois congressional delegation sent a letter last week to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross urging them to crack down on three Gulf airlines for violating “Open Skies” agreements. Well-paying airline jobs are “now under threat as a result of the anti-competitive practices of three subsidized Gulf airlines — Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways and Emirates,” the members wrote. (Only Sens. Dick Durbin, Tammy Duckworth and Rep. Mike Quigley, all Democrats, didn’t sign the letter.) The letter closely echoes the complaints of Delta, American and United airlines that the Gulf carriers are unfairly costing them business.
— If the letter sounds like it could have been written by a United lobbyist, that’s because it was.