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Southwest Pilots Back Boeing in Fight Over Max Certification

  • Two 737 models face deadline for approval at end of year
  • SWAPA union says it ‘100%’ supports pushing back deadline
Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 passenger jet parked on the tarmac at Midway International Airport (MDW) in Chicago, Illinois.

Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 passenger jet parked on the tarmac at Midway International Airport (MDW) in Chicago, Illinois.

Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

Boeing Co. gained an unlikely ally in the pilots of the world’s largest 737 operator as the planemaker lobbies Congress to extend the deadline for certifying its Max 10 and Max 7 models and avoid a potentially costly cockpit redesign.

“We 100% support the extension,” Casey Murray, head of the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association, said in an interview Friday. The union backing bolsters Boeing’s arguments on a politically sensitive issue -- even as the two parties battle in court over a 2019 lawsuit filed by the aviators.