Speaking at the union’s quadrennial convention in Portland, OR, and representing 110,000 federal employees in 40 separate departments and agencies, NFFE-IAM Federal District 1 President William Dougan announced NFFE-IAM’s enthusiastic endorsement of Barack Obama for a second term as President of the United States.
“President Obama is a friend of the federal employee, no question,” said Dougan. “At a fundamental level, the president understands the contributions federal employees make to our nation’s greatness. He and his administration have opened doors to federal employees that were previously closed under the last administration, and federal employees are better off because of it.”
The endorsement comes at a critical juncture for the federal workforce as shrinking budgets, looming sequestration cuts, and an extended pay freeze begin to weigh down on employees and government agencies. Statements made in recent months are telling as to which presidential candidate has federal workers’ best interests at heart. Whereas President Obama has said “a permanent federal pay freeze is neither sustainable nor desirable,” his opponent has called for cutting 200,000 federal jobs through attrition and reducing federal employee compensation.
“This endorsement is less about the past four years than it is about the future,” said Dougan. “Federal employees have a choice between two fundamentally different visions of the government’s role in American life. President Obama envisions a vibrant federal workforce capable of delivering vital services to the taxpayers. His opponent, meanwhile, has called for little more than job cuts, pay cuts, and benefit cuts.”
Calling the endorsement decision a clear choice, Dougan acknowledged differences with the current administration, particularly the pay freeze for federal workers, which has caused immense hardship for federal workers and their families. “The President must keep true to his commitment to end the federal pay freeze and grant federal workers the modest pay adjustment they have earned,” said Dougan.
“NFFE is not in the business of supporting Democrats over Republicans, or vice versa,” said Dougan. “We support candidates who support federal employees and their mission. Though we haven’t always seen eye-to-eye with the President, we know he is the man for the job. We fully endorse his candidacy for President of the United States.”