Users on social media are taking President Donald Trump to task for suggesting that he was responsible for zero commercial airline crashes in the entirety of 2017.
Trump made the comments on his Twitter account on Tuesday, suggesting that it was his “very strict” policies regarding commercial aviation that resulted in the safe year of flight.
Since taking office I have been very strict on Commercial Aviation. Good news - it was just reported that there were Zero deaths in 2017, the best and safest year on record!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2018
Yet that runs counter to the general trend that has occurred over the years prior to Trump’s tenure in office. No one died on a commercial flight in 2016, for example. In fact, there hasn’t been a death on a certified commercial passenger flight since 2009.
Twitter users were quick to point out Trump’s ego was making a claim that he couldn’t back up.
“Very strict on Commercial Aviation.”— Jason Rabinowitz (@AirlineFlyer) January 2, 2018
What does this even mean? What, if anything, has he done?There hasn’t been a deadly scheduled airline crash in the US since 2009. The 2017 news is a global achievement. https://t.co/phS2xs86hC
You know Trump is a sicko when he takes credit for no aviation deaths instead of crediting pilots, airlines, transportation safety & air traffic control! What an arrogant, self absorbed egomaniacal little twit!— Bishop Talbert Swan (@TalbertSwan) January 2, 2018
Since Trump thinks Presidents control airline crashes, thank Obama. No crashes of an AMERICAN airline carrier since '09. Unless Trump is taking credit for the safety of foreign airlines, this shows once again that he takes credit without bothering to learn facts. (This is nuts.)— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) January 2, 2018
Trump literally made it easier for commercial airlines to break #disabled passenger's wheelchairs with impunity—and harder for disabled travelers to find out which airlines have a habit of doing so. #CripTheVote https://t.co/BvZErMqWj2— Kendally Brown ?? (@kendallybrown) January 2, 2018
Trump: Planes don't crash because of me!— Andrea Romano (@theandrearomano) January 2, 2018
Airlines: Actually it's because we've invested in new technologies to improve perf--
Trump: MEEEE! MEEEEEE!
Would love to hear what on Earth trump thinks he's done in this arena. I mean, scrapping the Obama rules about airlines disclosing bag fees isn't really a triumph of safety or strictness. Not to mention thinking about rolling back pilot training reqs: https://t.co/nr8coyB3uH https://t.co/uxVtsnHiFz— DELETE UGH snipy (@snipy) January 2, 2018
Of course there haven't been any airline crashes lately. Trump Airlines is out of business!— Rick LeBeau (@rick_lebeau) January 2, 2018
Taking credit for things he hasn’t actually warranted praise for is not new ground for Trump. He has frequently taken credit for the rebounding U.S. economy, even though he largely inherited it from his predecessor, former President Barack Obama.
Yet his claims on airline safety are just absurd. He said that he’s responsible for safety due to his “strict” policies — which aren’t many and include rescinding a rule requiring companies to disclose baggage fees.
What’s more, Trump may still have to give Obama credit for airline safety, too, at least more than he can give himself. For all of 2017, the head of the Federal Aviation Administration was an appointment made by the former president that Trump had not yet replaced.
The president is seeking to shower himself with praise because he doesn’t hear enough of it from the media or the American people. The problem is that Trump isn’t typically deserving of any praise, so he ends up bestowing it onto himself.
He simply hasn’t done anything to warrant kudos, and until he does, Trump shouldn’t take credit for other people's successes — in this case, the airlines, aviation control handlers, pilots, co-pilots, and crew members, who all helped ensure the air was a safe place to travel this past year.