Machinists Name Republican Majority Leader Cantor ‘Job Killer of the Year’

The IAM is branding Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) as 2011’s “Job Killer of the Year” for his willingness to obstruct legislation that would sustain tens of thousands of American manufacturing jobs.

In addition to relentless opposition to all substantive jobs proposals, Cantor is now threatening to withhold funding for the US Export-Import Bank. At stake is a deal for 3.4 billion in loan guarantees that will allow Air India to finance the purchase of 27 U.S.-built Boeing 787s.

“The purpose of the Ex-Im Bank is to guarantee rather than finance transactions. The process has proven to be extremely effective in promotion of U.S.-manufactured products for export and has created hundreds of thousands of U.S. jobs,” said IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger. “The loan guarantees for Air India to purchase Boeing-built aircraft are a clear example of how the bank was designed to operate and would provide a vital benefit for the U.S. economy with tens of thousands of direct jobs and roughly 100,000 indirect and supply-chain jobs.”

Cantor’s actions, intended or not, support lobbying efforts by Delta Air Lines to prevent Air India from acquiring the additional aircraft. The effort includes a lawsuit by Air Lines for America (AFA, formerly Air Transport Association). This is the same Delta Air Lines that could afford the Northwest Airlines merger but is projected to avoid federal taxes for several years due to huge operating losses. And it is the same Delta Air Lines that has dumped nearly $10 billion in pension liability on the taxpayer.

“Rep. Cantor and the AFA are willing to give a single company, Delta Air Lines, an unfair competitive advantage at the expense of tens of thousands of U.S. workers,” declared Buffenbarger. “Our economy needs jobs much more than any one company needs special treatment from any elected official.”

A vote on legislation to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank is coming soon. Click here to tell your House Representative to vote “yes” on the bill to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank today.