Babbitt Nomination Moves Forward

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Randy Babbitt, President Barack Obama's nominee to head the FAA, has passed one hurdle -- on Wednesday, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee unanimously voted to send him along to the full Senate for confirmation. Senate confirmation is the final step before he can move into the post. NBAA applauded the move. "As a pilot, [Babbitt] has operational knowledge of our air transportation system," the organization said in a statement. "He also brings recognized expertise to our highly complex policy issues. As the nation's air transportation system faces many immediate challenges, all of us in the business aviation industry know that Randy will be able to hit the ground running at this critical point in the evolution of our system. We look forward to working with him to achieve our shared goal of leading the world in aviation." Babbitt, an ATP-rated pilot, has a background as a labor relations consultant, and was formerly president of the Air Line Pilots Association. Other GA groups have also responded positively to Babbitt's nomination. No date was announced for the next step of Senate confirmation.