November 8, 2010
The November 2, 2010, mid-term elections have changed the majority party for the U.S. House of Representatives, and reduced the majority for Democrats in the Senate.
When the 112th Congress convenes in January, the House is expected to have 239 Republicans and 187 Democrats, with nine races still too close to call. On the other side of Capitol Hill, the Senate will have 51 Democrats, 46 Republicans and two independents who are expected to caucus with the Democrats; one election is still to be determined.
House Republicans added at least 60 seats to their caucus; in the Senate, Democrats retain their majority, though by a smaller margin. Among the newly elected Senators are two pilots; West Virginia’s Governor, Joe Manchin (D-WV), who earlier this year issued a proclamation noting the importance of general aviation, including business aviation, to the state and Senator-elect Pat Toomey (R-PA), who is also an active GA pilot.
The changes in Congress will also impact the makeup of the House and Senate General Aviation (GA) Caucuses, which were formed last year to increase awareness of the value general aviation provides to the nation’s citizens, companies and communities.
The House GA Caucus, which has been co-chaired by Reps. Vern Ehlers (R-3-MI) and Allen Boyd (D-2-FL), will select new leadership for 2011, following Rep. Ehlers’ announcement earlier this year that he would retire from Congress, and an electoral defeat for Rep. Boyd in the mid-term elections. The leadership of the Senate GA Caucus is expected to remain the same, with Sens. Mark Begich (D-AK) and Mike Johanns (R-NE) continuing their service as caucus co-chairs in 2011.
“Post-election changes in Congress are a fact of life in Washington,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “NBAA will continue working with leaders from both political parties to promote policies that support business aviation.”