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Is there going to be a Donald J. Trump International Airport?

Several Republicans have filed a bill to rename a large D.C.-area airport after the former president, but does it have enough steam?
Is there going to be a Donald J. Trump International Airport?
Posted at 8:00 PM, Apr 02, 2024

What do Dwight D. Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush have in common? Well, on top of the fact that they're all former presidents, all three Republicans are among the few to have airports named after them. And if it's up to some current House Republicans, one more of their party's leaders will be added to that list.

On Friday, Pennsylvania Republican Rep. Guy Reschenthaler introduced a bill that would rename Virginia's Washington Dulles International Airport after former President Donald Trump. 

In a statement, he said, "As millions of domestic and international travelers fly through the airport, there is no better symbol of freedom, prosperity and strength than hearing 'Welcome to Trump International Airport' as they land on American soil."

And six other House Republicans agree, co-sponsoring the bill ahead of its referral to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for further consideration. These include Tennessee Reps. Chuck Fleischmann and Andrew Ogles, Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar, Alabama Rep. Barry Moore, Texas Rep. Troy Nehls and Florida Rep. Mike Waltz. 

But will the Washington, D.C., area's most prominent international airport really be renamed "Donald J. Trump International Airport?" The short answer: No.

To pass the House, the bill would need the support of every Republican, as they have just a one-vote margin in the coming weeks. And since the bill isn't a major priority, it's unlikely the bill will even receive a vote.

But even if it did pass the House, it would head to the Democratic-held Senate, who almost definitely won't approve it. There's also the filibuster rule which requires 60 votes on legislation before it heads to President Joe Biden's desk — a number that would include both parties again unlikely pledging support.

And even if it did beat the odds and headed to the president's desk, there's probably no chance the leader would approve the bill, and that would be the final "no."

Other Democrats have already expressed their disapproval of the proposal. 

Virginia Rep. Gerry Connelly, one of two Democrats who represent the area around Dulles, said in a statement regarding the proposal, "Donald Trump is facing 91 felony charges. If Republicans want to name something after him, I'd suggest they find a federal prison."

And Virginia Democrat Rep. Don Beyer said in a post on X, "One of Trump's first acts as president was a racist Muslim ban that blocked permanent American residents from their own country. I went to Dulles to try to help innocent people caught up in the chaos. I remember grandparents detained for hours as their terrified families waited."

Dulles is named after John Foster Dulles, a member of the Republican Party who served as secretary of state under President Eisenhower, who also has an airport named after him. 

As for other presidents whose names fill American travel tickets, Democrats are few and far between. Only two Democratic presidents' names grace airport screens — John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, New York, and Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport in Little Rock, Arkansas — while six have that of Republican leaders. 

Those six include George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston; Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Washington, D.C.; Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, Michigan; Wichita Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport in Wichita, Kansas; Dickinson Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport in Dickinson, North Dakota; and Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport in Springfield, Illinois.

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