Cohen: Delta Misled Memphis on Future of Amsterdam Flight

MEMPHIS, TN – Upon learning this morning that Delta Air Lines has decided not to continue summer service of the Memphis to Amsterdam flight, as was promised, Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) expressed disappointment and frustration with Delta’s growing string of broken promises.

“In a 2008 Judiciary Committee hearing about the proposed Delta Northwest merger, I asked Delta Air Lines Chief Executive Officer Richard Anderson if the Memphis to Amsterdam flight would continue if the merger was approved, and Mr. Anderson gave me his word that it would continue,” said Congressman Cohen.  “I was disappointed to learn last February that Delta planned to scale back the flight to a summer seasonal schedule but took Delta at their word that they would bring back the flight in the summer of 2013. Now that Delta has eliminated the flight altogether, I am disappointed that Delta has once again broken a promise they made to me and the people of Memphis.”

Congressman Cohen has already reached out to Delta Air Lines and requested a meeting with them to discuss their decision to eliminate the Amsterdam flight.  Congressman Cohen is also reaching out to U.S. Department of Justice Attorney General Eric Holder to discuss the growing evidence that Delta is violating the promises made to the Department when seeking antitrust immunity for their merger.

As a member of both the Antitrust Task Force of the House Judiciary Committee and the Aviation Subcommittee of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Congressman Cohen has exercised oversight over the 2008 merger of Delta and Northwest.  When Congressman Cohen spoke with representatives from Northwest and Delta, they assured him that Memphis will lose neither jobs nor flights as a result of the merger, two promises that have been broken.

In June, Congressman Cohen spoke to Attorney General Holder during a House Judiciary Committee about possible anti-competitive practices by Delta Air Lines in Memphis.  The Congressman encouraged the Attorney General to examine Delta’s inflated ticket prices in Memphis and possible monopolistic practices.  The Congressman has also reached out to Southwest Airlines and JetBlue to encourage them to expand operations in Memphis which will increase competition and lower prices.