Machinists Endorse Trumka Team to Lead AFL-CIO

Washington, D.C., July 2009 –  The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) today announced its support of Richard Trumka, Liz Shuler and Arlene Holt Baker in their bids to lead the 10-million member AFL-CIO.

“Rich Trumka is much more than just the most powerful speaker in the labor movement today,” said IAM President Tom Buffenbarger. “He is dedicated to the principal goals of the North American Labor Movement: good jobs, safe workplaces, affordable health care, secure retirements and employee free choice. With Liz Shuler as secretary-treasurer and Arlene Holt Baker as executive vice president, the IAM is confident the AFL-CIO will be more than equal to the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”

The IAM Executive Council voted unanimously to support the Trumka leadership team following a meeting that included a review of potential candidates and their support for key Machinists’ issues including expanded skills and apprenticeship training, support for a national JOBS Now! program and tighter control of AFL-CIO expenditures.

“The AFL-CIO can be an extremely effective voice for millions of working men and women, and a moral compass for businesses that too often have none,” said Buffenbarger. “It is time for the federation to reassert its rightful place in determining the course of our nation’s history and to restore labor’s political clout and protect the AFL-CIO’s finances. The Trumka, Shuler, Holt Baker team is poised to do exactly that.”

The IAM is among the nation’s largest industrial trade unions, representing nearly 700,000 active and retired members under more than 5,000 contracts in aerospace, transportation, shipbuilding and defense-related industries. For more information, visit www.goiam.org.