In an interview with CNN’s Alisyn Camerota Wednesday morning, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie lit into United Airlines for its treatment of a passenger they had to forcibly remove from a flight Sunday evening because they needed his seat and the seats of three other passengers to transport crew members in.
Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey is a United hub, and Christie said he frequently gets complaints from his constituents about the airline.
“I don’t think United ever really recovered from their merger with Continental. I don’t think they ever established a culture,” Christie said, calling their treatment of passenger Dr. David Dao unacceptable.
“With United, the customer is always last. And the CEO proved that by having to take three turns to simply say ‘I’m sorry,’” Christie continued. “It shows you what little regard United holds their customers in.”
He also blamed federal rules for giving airlines too much latitude and for allowing the common practice of overbooking.
When it was pointed out to Christie that the United Express flight actually wasn’t overbooked but rather needed to kick passengers off to transport four crew members to another airport, Christie replied that passengers that have paid for their ticket should always have precedence.
Asked if he would ever fly United again, Christie exclaimed, “I’m going to have to! It’s 70 percent of the flights from the Newark airport.”
In a separate interview with Fox News, Christie didn’t hold back at all, saying, “Everybody who flies commercial knows United is awful. They know it’s awful.”
But speaking Wednesday morning on “Good Morning America,” United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz said the incident has not made him believe that he should step down from his role, according to BBC.
"No. I was hired to make United better and we've been doing that and that's what I'll continue to do," Munoz insisted.
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