Mindy Robinson, a Trump supporter and 2022 candidate for District 3 Southern Nevada, posted a disturbing video on Twitter showing the AA pilot threatening to divert the Phoenix-bound plane to Kansas:
“Wow. I’m on a plane full of patriots flying from DC to Phoenix and we started chanting “USA” …and the Captain came on and told us he’d drop us off in Kansas if he had to if we didn’t obey their every single rule. American Airlines is everything but American.”
Lawenforcementtoday.com reports: Pro-trump passengers on Flight AA1242 flying from Reagan National Airport to Phoenix Sky Harbor began chanting “USA, USA” as they returned to Phoenix from the Capitol Hill riot. The pilot on the American Airlines flight warned passengers over a loudspeaker to stop chanting:
“This is the way it’s gonna be. This is going to be a four-and-a-half-hour flight out to Phoenix. We’ll put this plane down in the middle of Kansas and dump people off.
“I don’t care. We will do that if that’s what it takes, so behave, please.”
Following the pilot’s warning, several passengers voiced their disapproval. One passenger can be heard say, “Isn’t this supposed to be American Airlines.” Another was heard shouting, “Behave? What, are we in America?”
Robinson said the airplane was “full of patriots.”
One passenger on the flight later said that some passengers began heckling Senator Lindsey Graham at the airport prior to the flight. Arizona resident Cliff Mansley said:
“He deserves our respect, and he was very respectful to me.”
Republican Senator Graham was confronted by Trump supporters at the airport to board a flight. The unruly crowd shouted “traitor” at the Senator.
Mansley then commented on his participation in the Capitol siege:
“(At the Capitol) I asked a police officer if I could cross the barrier that was on the ground and he shrugged his shoulders and said, ‘why not?’ They were totally unprepared. It almost seemed too easy for the crazy people who went up over the top,”
A spokesman for American Airlines issued a statement regarding the incident:
“Prior to departure from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), the pilot onboard flight 1242 made an announcement emphasizing the importance of following crew member instructions and complying with mandatory face-covering policies.”
Twitter had mixed reactions to Robinson’s post. One user, identified as Nate Igor Smith, tweeted:
“Why don’t you just leave your fellow passengers alone like a normal human?”
Robinson responded that the chant only lasted about ten seconds, and that “if saying ‘USA’ offends you so much…f***g move.”
User Master Rebecca Schoenkorpf pointed out the Capitol riot in her response to the video:
“You had to obey RULES to fly on an AIRPLANE with a bunch of people who had just KILLED A COP in the CAPITOL?”
Airlines were anticipating problems as rioters returned home on flights from Washington. DC. The Association of Flight Attendants (CWA) called for rioters to be banned from flights departing the capital. International President Sara Nelson, pointing out that there were also problems on flight traveling to the “Stop The Steal,” issued a statement calling for participants to be banned from flights:
“The mob mentality behavior that took place on several flights to the D.C. area yesterday was unacceptable and threatened the safety and security of every single person onboard.
“Our first priority in aviation safety and security is to keep any problems on the ground. Some of the people who traveled in our planes yesterday participated in the insurrection at the Capitol today. Their violent and seditious actions at the Capitol today create further concern about their departure from the DC area.
“Acts against our democracy, our government, and the freedom we claim as Americans must disqualify these individuals from the freedom of flight.”
On Thursday, House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) urged the Transportation Safety Administration and the FBI to add “violent perpetrators” who participated in the Capitol attack to the federal No-Fly list.
Alaska Airlines banned 14 passengers from future travel with the carrier after “unacceptable” behavior on a flight from Washington to Seattle. The Seattle-based airline said the flight late Wednesday had passengers who were “non-mask complaint, rowdy, argumentative, and harassed out crew members.”
A delta flight from Washington to Minneapolis removed two “unruly” passengers. The airline did not comment on the cause, but several witnesses said they were removed for having a conversation expressing their support for Donald Trump.
The Federal Aviation Administration vowed to take “strong enforcement action” against disruptive passengers, saying the agency agreed to the concerns expressed by the Association of Flight Attendants. FAA Administrator Steven Dickson issued a statement:
“I expect all passengers to follow crew member instructions, which are in place for their safety and the safety of flight. Unruly passenger behavior … can distract, disrupt, and threaten crew members’ ability to conduct their key safety functions.
“FAA will pursue strong enforcement action against anyone who endangers the safety of a flight, with penalties ranging from monetary fines to jail time.”
U.S. airlines have increased security actions at Washington-area airports following the attack on the Capitol on Wednesday, and American Airlines halted alcohol services on all outbound and inbound flights in the capital.
Pro-Trump supporters invaded the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday in an attempt to stop lawmakers from certifying the Electoral College vote in the 2020 presidential election. During the five-hour assault that overwhelmed the Capitol police, five people died, including a 35-year-old woman shot by police and a Capitol Police Department officer.