It looks like Las Vegas McCarran Airport will soon be renamed Las Vegas Reid Airport …
McCarran Airport becomes Harry Reid Airport
The Clark County Commission unanimously decided this week to change the name of Las Vegas International Airport – McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas will soon be known as Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas.
With this vote, the county is instructing airport staff to file a change with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to rename the airport. The Clark County Commission has final authority over this as it oversees the airport. So this is more or less certain.
The FAA must now take steps to process the name change, which is expected to take a few months. Renaming the airport will cost millions of dollars, although taxpayers won’t be at stake for it. Rather, the rebranding is fully paid for by private contributions.
Why is Las Vegas Airport getting a new name?
Why is Las Vegas International Airport being renamed? For a specific context:
- Patrick McCarran was a US Democratic Senator from Nevada from 1933 to 1954
- Harry Reid was a Democratic U.S. Senator from Nevada from 1987 to 2017 and was the Senate majority leader from 2007 to 2015
- Because of McCarran’s immigration and anti-Semitic views, calls have been made for some time to rename the airport
- Meanwhile, Reid was a popular Nevada politician and in many ways has raised Nevada’s political standing at the national level
Reid made the following statement following the Clark County Commission’s decision:
“I humbly express my appreciation for today’s recognition. I would like to express my deep gratitude to Commissioner Segerblom, the entire Clark County Commission, and the many others who were involved in this renaming. “
Should airports be named after politicians?
Discussions about this will likely revolve around culture abandonment very quickly, but let’s talk about that bigger picture. With a few exceptions, I’m not a fan of airports that are named after people:
- Why can’t we just call it Las Vegas International Airport, especially since Las Vegas is a city with only one major international airport?
- It’s one thing to name an airport after someone that a vast majority of people can agree on (like Martin Luther King), but for me it’s a little different to name an airport after a politician
- At some point it all comes down to partisan commissions that decide in favor of one politician over another, and is this really a rabbit hole that we want to go under?
Sure, I can understand that Reid has a better legacy than McCarran (and for good reason), but personally, I wish we could just stop unnecessarily naming airports after people. But that’s just me …
In the coming months, McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas will be renamed Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas following a vote by the Clark County Commission. Given McCarran’s legacy, that’s fair enough, though I’m still generally not a fan of airports named after politicians.
What do you think of McCarran Airport being renamed Reid Airport?
(Tip of the hat to look from the wing)