• Presidential Trains (Inauguration, Campaign, Etc.)

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by SouthernRailway
 
I see that President Trump recently flew from D.C. to Philadelphia and may regularly travel between D.C. and NYC.

Why doesn't he take his own special Amtrak train instead for short trips like those? Couldn't Amtrak turn a few locomotives and cars over to the Federal government for Presidential use?

I know that Queen Elizabeth takes commuter trains, and there are several Royal trains in Europe, so having senior leaders travel by train happens elsewhere. It seems wasteful to tie up large airports for short Presidential flights.
  by electricron
 
SouthernRailway wrote:I see that President Trump recently flew from D.C. to Philadelphia and may regularly travel between D.C. and NYC.

Why doesn't he take his own special Amtrak train instead for short trips like those? Couldn't Amtrak turn a few locomotives and cars over to the Federal government for Presidential use?

I know that Queen Elizabeth takes commuter trains, and there are several Royal trains in Europe, so having senior leaders travel by train happens elsewhere. It seems wasteful to tie up large airports for short Presidential flights.
The Queen doesn't really like to fly. Donald Trump loves to fly. That's a significant difference.
Air Force One doesn't use the public passenger terminals at these airports, it is using private gates and it is isolated away from the other jets. Additionally, it uses Air Force bases as much as possible where there aren't any public gates. Marine One is used often the fly the President over cities, few train stations have helicopter pads.
It is more likely he would cause more disruption to other passengers at trains stations than at airports.
Last edited by electricron on Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by Greg Moore
 
The concern too is security. Look at the disruption caused when Obama took Amtrak into WAS for his own inauguration in 2009.

Among other things, all switches had to be spiked into position and no other trains permitted in the same area.
  by R36 Combine Coach
 
As mentioned before, Biden is known to be a "regular" commuter on Acela between WAS and Delaware, although much to the frustration of daily passenger and USSS.
  by Backshophoss
 
Any time POTUS moves by rail,the move is very disruptive due to Secert Service security concerns,basicly they shut down NEC
while the President is on the move.
Also the amount of Comm gear needed would require 1 car on the train would be dedicated to the needed Comm links
Both Air Force 1 and Marine 1 have the needed Comm gear.
The "football" case is only 1 part of the total Comm package.
  by R Paul Carey
 
The USSS requires, among other things, the adjacent track(s) on either side to be CLEAR for any POTUS movement, for the entire intended route.

This is a "deal breaker" for the principal main lines of most Class 1 roads.
  by STrRedWolf
 
Plus, Air Force 1 doesn't need to deal with TSA agents and is an on-demand service.
  by mmi16
 
STrRedWolf wrote:Plus, Air Force 1 doesn't need to deal with TSA agents and is an on-demand service.
And costs the taxpayer hundreds if not thousands of times more than competing forms of transportation.
  by electricron
 
mmi16 wrote:And costs the taxpayer hundreds if not thousands of times more than competing forms of transportation.
Not really, when you consider the costs for everyone traveling with the President, including other guests, secret service, the flight crew, the staff, and the press.

UK area is 94,058 square miles, California is 163,696 square miles, the USA is 3.797 million square miles.
Longest domestic flights: Inverness to Gatwick is 468 miles, D.C. to Honolulu is 4,840 miles.
FYI. D.C. to Fairbanks is 3,284 miles, D.C. to Seattle is 2,325 miles.
One can take a train from Inverness to London, one cannot take a train Honolulu or Fairbanks to D.C.
  by Greg Moore
 
Now, at the risk of getting political, I personally would love to see a bit less of an "Imperial Presidency".
No, I don't want any president getting assassinated and I think precautions are required, but at the end of the day, the office is important and we have mechanisms in place where if the worst case scenario DID in fact happen, the US has a chain of command and a process for dealing with it.

I honestly would must prefer that the person in the office COULD say take a chartered Acela w/o having to disrupt NEC traffic any more than say a sports team.

I think it would be good for us, as I think we end up forgetting the person in the office is just a person, and I think it would help the person in the office be a bit more in touch with the people.
  by David Benton
 
On that note , the Queen is only a "figurehead" head of state for the UK. she makes no decisions or policy. The royal train is probably not as big a security risk as a Presidential train would be .
  by DutchRailnut
 
And last Great president did take train to his inauguration , just not current one.
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  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Mr. Railnut, Obama and Biden were both "-Elects" when that special move was handled.

Had "bad things" happened, Bush and Cheney would have served their terms until 12N ET, and at that time, Speaker Pelosi would have been sworn in as POTUS and a VPOTUS would have been appointed/confirmed under the XXV Amendment.

Finally, "Amtrak Joe" became "C-32 Joe" for his two terms as VP.
  by DutchRailnut
 
Like I said " traveling to their inauguration" !!!
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