Union: Boeing tanker ‘should be obvious choice’

District 751 leaders are signalling strong support for Boeing’s proposed NewGen tanker.

The company announced today that is is submitting a bid to build 179 of the planes, which will be based on 767 airframes, for the U.S. Air Force.

“The NewGen Tanker will draw on the experience and talents of an integrated U.S. Tanker Team, including the best of our Boeing defense and commercial businesses and our nationwide supplier network,” said Jim Albaugh, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “It’s a proven team and existing infrastructure that is ready to deliver these NewGen Tankers on Day One.”

Machinist union leaders — and members — in Seattle could not agree more.

In a statement posted to the union’s homepage this morning, District 751 leadership called the Boeing tanker proposal “the common-sense solution, because the planes would be built in existing factories by our highly skilled and experienced union workers.”

Union leaders also said they were pleased by Albaugh’s recent promise that Machinists here in Puget Sound — as well as our union brothers and sisters in Wichita — would get more work than previously expected, should Boeing win the tanker bid. “Obviously, that’s good for us, and for our Puget Sound communities. We believe it is good for America, too, because we know that when the world’s best aerospace workers are given a challenge, they deliver a product on time, and within budget. Just ask the Navy how we did with the P-8 Poseidon.”

“Boeing’s NewGen tanker is better for America’s warfighters, taxpayers and economy, and should be the obvious choice for the U.S. Air Force,” the District 751 statement said. “This union is fully committed in support of Boeing’s bid to provide all 179 tankers. We are actively working on Boeing’s behalf, and we stand ready to build America’s new-generation tanker here in Puget Sound, just as our union forbearers built the KC-135s some 50 years ago.”

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