How does the IAM’s U.S. presidential endorsement process work?

For the 2020 U.S. presidential election, the IAM did something never before in our union or the modern U.S. labor movement. We gave our members a vote in our presidential endorsement. We will continue this tradition for the upcoming 2024 presidential election.

Every U.S. IAM member in good standing is eligible to register on iamvoting.org for the IAM’s 2024 presidential endorsement election.

Soon, every IAM member who registered will be given a chance to vote online via a third-party election platform for who should receive the union’s endorsement for president, regardless of the political party.

Then, the IAM’s State Council Presidents will vote between the top vote-getting presidential candidates chosen by the membership from each party. This candidate will be the IAM’s endorsement for president of the United States. 

Why is the IAM involved in politics?

  • Politics affects everything in our lives.
  • Legislation enacted and decisions made by elected officials impact our work lives.
  • Legislation that allows our union to fight for better pay and benefits for our families.

There is a direct link between the ballot box and our economic and workplace security—and the enemies of working people are more engaged than ever in trying to destroy us.

The IAM engages in politics because we care about working family issues—job security, workplace safety, healthcare, retirement, and the right to join a union—to name a few. We stay away from so-called “wedge issues” that only serve to divide working people.

The IAM’s legislative agenda is focused on issues that impact IAM members and their families, including:

  • Economic Justice: The IAM supports policies that promote economic justice for all workers, such as raising the minimum wage, expanding access to affordable healthcare, and continuing investment in infrastructure.
  • Health care: The IAM also supports lowering prescription drug prices and protecting access to quality health care.
  • Retirement Security: The IAM also supports efforts to strengthen the defined benefit pension system and protect workers’ retirement savings. Members believe everyone should have retirement security. They strongly believe pension benefit promises made in collective bargaining negotiations must be kept.
  • Tax Fairness: The IAM opposes tax cuts that benefit the wealthy and corporations at the expense of working families. The IAM supports tax policies that would raise wages, create jobs, and invest in infrastructure.
  • Trade: The IAM opposes trade agreements that lead to job losses and lower wages for American workers. The IAM supports trade agreements that protect American jobs and raise wages. A trade policy that makes workers a priority, not corporations.
  • The PRO Act: The PRO Act would make it easier for workers to organize and bargain collectively.
  • Outsourcing: Members strongly believe corporate incentives to outsource work to Mexico and countries outside North America must be eliminated.
  • Strengthening our industrial base: Members believe our country should support good quality jobs in the commercial and defense sectors. The IAM continues to voice concerns over continuing plant closings and layoffs.
  • Stronger laws protecting workers and union rights: Members are seriously concerned over the continued weakening of workers’ rights and believe that strong unions remain the key to our future.
  • A trade policy that puts working people first: Members believe trade policy should make workers a priority, not corporations that use trade policy to ship jobs overseas.

Are union dues spent on political candidates?

No, the Machinists Union does not use your dues for political campaign contributions. Your dues pay for servicing you as a member, including bargaining, enforcing your contract, and organizing new members to build our union’s power.

To learn more about how dues are spent, visit iam4.me/dues. 

Is the IAM telling me how to vote?

No. Most importantly, you should vote and make an informed decision for you and your family. With the future of our nation at stake, we owe it to our children and grandchildren to get engaged in politics.

So, make sure you are registered to vote. Make a plan to vote early, by mail or on Election Day. Lastly, get everyone around you to vote, too.

What is the Machinists Non-Partisan Political League?

Political spending comes solely from voluntary member donations to the Machinists Non-Partisan Political League (MNPL).

MNPL allows IAM members to gather individual contributions, coordinate political activity, and elect candidates who support IAM members and their families. Candidates we support know that the MNPL stands for economic justice, security in the workplace, and equality for every member. They do not take us for granted.

To learn more about MNPL and to become a contributing member, visit goIAM.org/mnpl  or contact your shop steward. 

How does the IAM endorse political candidates for other offices?

The IAM Legislative and Political Department examines the political positions of each candidate and scrutinizes their voting record. This information is then shared with local lodges, districts, and state councils. Members can make an informed choice when they endorse a candidate or vote in an election.

U.S. senatorial and congressional endorsements are made at state councils. MNPL contributing members across the United States get involved in politics at the ground level. You can participate in the questioning and advocate for political candidates who fight to protect our jobs, pensions, health and safety, and wages.

As the name suggests, MNPL supports candidates who fight for American workers and advocate for our members, regardless of political affiliation. IAM State Councils have a long history of supporting Democrats, Republicans, and Independents.

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