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NWA deal: Chisholm’s ace in the hole

Rep. Tom Rukavina, the feisty populist DFLer from Virginia, is pretty confident that the Northwest reservations center in Chisholm will survive Delta’s takeover of Northwest. It’s not necessarily because the workers are so productive, though they are. And it’s not because he trusts any placating words be uttered by airlines’ executives.

So what then?

“It’s Jim Oberstar’s hometown,” Rukavina points out.

U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar just happens to be the chairman of the powerful Transportation committee in the Congress. He’s already promising to raise all sorts of questions about the deal. Neither Delta nor Northwest will want to do anything more to offend him.

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