Deal With Coburn Prevents FAA Shutdown
He'll get to insert language in upcoming bill
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 16, 2011 5:10 AM CDT
Tom Coburn (R-OK) speaks to a reporter in this August 2, 2011 file photo.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – The FAA won't be shutting down after all. Under heavy pressure from fellow Republicans, Tom Coburn relented last night, removing a hold preventing the Senate from passing a transportation bill that would keep the FAA's doors open. The bill passed with flying colors, with only Coburn and five other Republicans voting against it, Politico reports.

"Righteousness has prevailed," declared Jim Inhofe, who helped negotiate the deal. Coburn had objected to a provision in the highway portion of the bill requiring states to set aside money for enhancements like bike lanes or sound barriers. Under the deal, Coburn will be allowed to insert language allowing states to opt out of that requirement in an upcoming bill.