The presidents of four maritime unions, including SIU President Michael Sacco, earlier this week endorsed U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska). The text of their endorsement letter follows. Signing the document were Sacco, AMO President Paul Doell, MM&P President Don Marcus, and MEBA President Marshall Ainley. For a PDF copy, click HERE
Dear Senator Sullivan:
Oh behalf of the undersigned American maritime labor organizations, we are pleased to endorse your candidacy for reelection to the United States Senate. Together, our unions represent licensed and unlicensed American merchant mariners working aboard United States-flag commercial vessels operating in our nation’s foreign and domestic shipping trades. We also represent other maritime personnel, including those mariners working aboard public and private ferry and other passenger vessel operations, and aboard civilian crewed ships in the government fleet; state licensed maritime pilots; and maritime industry shore side clerical and service employees.
We are pleased to endorse your reelection because of your strong, consistent support for America’s maritime industry and your vigorous and persistent efforts in behalf of America’s maritime workforce.
Your work in Congress to achieve a fully funded Maritime Security Program; to ensure full enforcement of America’s U.S.-flag cargo preference shipping requirements; and to preserve our nation’s coastwise shipping laws have helped ensure that our nation has the U.S.-flag commercial sealift readiness capability and the American mariners needed by the Department of Defense to support American troops and America’s interests overseas.
You have been a leader in Congress working to increase the number of commercial vessels operating under the U.S.-flag and to increase the shipboard employment opportunities for American mariners. Absent such action, we as a nation will not only experience the continued outsourcing of American maritime jobs to the benefit of foreign maritime personnel but will also be forced to entrust a greater portion of the requisite commercial sealift readiness capability needed by the Department of Defense, along with the safety and supply of American troops, to foreign flag-of-convenience vessels and their foreign citizen crews. Without your continued efforts, our country will not have the necessary commercial U.S.-flag sealift capability it needs and American troops deployed overseas would be dangerously dependent on foreign vessels and foreign crews to bring them the supplies, equipment and materiel they need to do their job on behalf of the American people.
ln short, your actions have demonstrated a clear and unwavering commitment to the American maritime industry and the American maritime worker. We are pleased to stand with you and we look forward to working with you in the next Congress.