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Aviation leaders gather to support Todd Tiahrt for Senate

Some members of the aviation industry gathered at Yingling Aviation Monday for a luncheon supporting U.S. Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Goddard) in his bid for Senate.

“We really need to make sure we have an advocate in Washington,” Cessna CEO Jack Pelton said in remarks to attendees.

Tiahrt is running for the Senate seat that will be vacated by U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback. He is running against U.S. Rep. Jerry Moran in the primary.

Cessna spent $200 million with 77 different Kansas companies last year. Add to that spending by Hawker Beechcraft, Bombardier Learjet and other aviation-related companies in Kansas, and the industry is a key one in the state.

As a U.S. Representative in Congress, Tiahrt has been a strong voice for aviation, Pelton said. “We clearly need someone who knows aerospace in Kansas,” Pelton said.

Tiahrt said he supports initiatives such as tax relief for those who create jobs, a cost-benefit analysis of regulations in the pursuit of regulation reform, litigation reform, health care reform to lower health care costs by 10 percent and a move away from reliance on foreign oil.

In order to help lower unemployment, capital must be available for businesses. “We have to start making things again,” Tiarht said.