The Romney-Ryan Budget Would Gut Programs Most Prized by American Sportsmen: The Romney-Ryan budget could cut funding for conservation and outdoor recreation programs by nearly 20 percent – including those that conserve waterfowl habitat, assess fish stocks, eradicate invasive species, and set land aside for recreation and conservation.
The Romney-Ryan Budget Would Cut Funding for Hunting Grounds: The Romney-Ryan budget could cut the funds needed to manage the National Wildlife Refuge System, which conserves some of the most important hunting grounds in North America. This is just more of the same from Paul Ryan, whose budget last year also eliminated all funding for these very programs. In fact, 31 Sportsmen organizations opposed the budget that Ryan authored and Romney embraced, stating its provisions “strike directly at America’s longstanding tradition” of fish and wildlife conservation.
THEIR REAL RECORD
Mitt Romney Quadrupled Fees on Purchasing or Carrying Firearms: After taking office as governor of Massachusetts, Romney drastically increased fees for firearms dealers, ammunition licenses and more.
Mitt Romney Tried to Raid Sportsmen Funds: As governor of Massachusetts, Romney tried to raid the fish and game fund created from hunting and fishing license fees and used to conserve wildlife across the state.
Mitt Romney Increased Fees on ATVs, Snowmobiles, Boats, and Jet Skis: As governor of Massachusetts, Romney increased outdoor recreation vehicle registration and dealer fees, making it more expensive for people to enjoy the outdoors.
Paul Ryan and House Republicans are Leading an Attack on Conserving Wildlife Habitats: Under Paul Ryan and House Republican’s leadership, congress is launching the largest attack on fish and wildlife habitat in 100 years.
THIER BROKEN PROMISES
Mitt Romney Broke His Campaign Promise to Enhance Massachusetts’ Open Spaces: During Romney’s tenure as governor, state parks were “lacking,” and outdoor advocates noted that plummeting state support was distressing the parks system.
Mitt Romney Promised Not To Raise Taxes And Instead Raised Fees On State Park Activities: Although he campaigned on a promise not to raise taxes, Romney increased fees on parking, access to piers, and recreational activities at state facilities.
Mitt Romney Wasn’t Honest about his Hunting Experience and Gun Control Record: When Romney ran for the Senate in 1994, he said “I don’t line up with the NRA.” But in 2007, Romney falsely claimed to have been endorsed by the NRA when he ran for governor. He later joined the NRA only after deciding to run for President. In 2007, he claimed “I’ve been a hunter pretty much all my life” but admitted he only had gone twice.
Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan Would Sell Off Public Land: Romney supports the Ryan budget, which would sell millions of acres of public land now used for hunting and fishing, handing them over to special interests – even though recreation and tourism on public lands supports more than 400,000 jobs and generates nearly $50 billion in economic activity.
Mitt Romney is Out of Touch with America’s Sportsmen: Romney has said that he doesn’t understand the purpose of federal land. He doesn’t realize that they provide hunting and fishing grounds for American sportsmen
Yesterday Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and others made statements attempting to capitalize on President Obama’s comments on Shipbuilding during the final Presidential Debate. As the organization that represents the workforce at the Naval Shipyards the Metal Trades Department President Ron Ault responds.
Ron Ault, President of The Metal Trades Department:
“The Metal Trades represents the workforce at the Naval Shipyards and the Norfolk Navy Public Works Centers at the Norfolk Naval Operations Base as well as at private shipyards that build naval warships- President Obama correctly pointed out it is about the capability of our Naval warships- not just the quantity of ships. We are building the most versatile, most capable technologically advanced warships in the world, fully capable of engaging multiple targets simultaneously.
“I was personally present at the christening ceremonies of the USS America, LHA 6, under construction at Huntington Ingalls Shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi, this past Saturday, the fourth ship named America is a new class of big deck amphibious aircraft carrier designed to be active in the US fleet until at least 2053. The crew that will man the America in 2053 will face yet unknown mission requirements. Our ships are designed to be adaptable and capable to successfully fight and win battles with yet unknown foes in yet unknown conflicts. There is no other Navy in the world that has the Navy America has, nor the technologies and fighting/survivability of our ships. America is far and away superior to any of the Navies of any nation on earth.
“I am proud to represent the world best shipbuilders and the very best ship repair/maintenance workforce. I took no insult from our President’s remarks nor did I see any reason for anyone in the shipbuilding or ship repair industry to. He simply spoke the truth. The Navy ships we build today are built for multi-missions to be able to respond to yet unknown missions of the future and are without question the most capable, most versatile warships ever built by any nation.”
“Politics matter, elections certainly matter, and policy matters,” said AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Arlene Holt Baker as she kicked off the 2012 Metal Trades Conference.
“We will win [this election] for working families,” said Holt Baker, “because we care about all America, and God knows we care about that 47 percent that Mitt Romney doesn’t seem to give a damn about.”
Attendees to the conference heard that sentiment repeated many times over the course of the two-day event held October 10-11, 2012, at Bally’s Hotel in Las Vegas.
The conference theme this year was stressing the importance of the upcoming elections with speakers focusing on the get-out-the-vote efforts needed in key battleground states as well as the presidential election.
Holt Baker emphasized policy differences between President Obama and Governor Romney – noting the stark different positions between the two on social programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.
“The Ryan/Romney budget would gut education, training, research and development and everything else that America needs to grow and it would end Medicare as we know and turn it into a cash cow for insurance companies. All of that to give tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires,” noted Holt Baker.
“Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and right wing Republicans, they do not share our values or our vision and that matters because values matter…. We must move forward.”
Bridget Martin, political director for the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, encouraged attendees hit the ground running when they returned to their home states after the Conference. Martin introduced Mitt Romney, “Mr. 1%,” using a series of videos and slides from the IBB and AFL-CIO.
“If Mitt wins, the middle class loses,” emphasized Martin.
Sean McGarvey, President of the North America’s Building Trades Unions
Martin’s presentation went on to identify the critical House and Senate, Gubernatorial and State Legislative races where union workers needed to focus their time and attention between now and November 6, 2012.
Last year, at the 2011 69th Metal Trades Department Convention, delegates voted to back President Obama and Vice President Biden in their re-election bid and Conference attendees were presented with MTD for Obama/Biden buttons and other materials during this Conference.
Attendees were greeted at the Conference with videos from DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Shultz, Senate Candidate from Virginia Tim Kaine and Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley.
Building and Construction Trades Department President Sean McGarvey began his remarks talking about Sequestration and how those cuts will impact members in the building and metal trades.
“Sequestration is going to happen. These cuts are going to affect our members. The cuts are going to happen at the Pentagon, the Department of Energy, the Department of Transportation, GSA the Labor Department they are all going to get cut, and so is every other federal agency. A lot of how we wind up, a lot of how that deal is structured, depends on what happens on November 6th.”
Moving on to discuss the elections, McGarvey pointed out the billionaires that are contributing to the GOP and supporting Mitt Romney are dangerous. Groups funded by the likes of Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire owner of the Venetian Hotel, and the Koch Brother are giving millions of dollars to fund campaigns like the ballot initiative to get rid of workers rights in California and the anti-union maneuvering in Wisconsin and Ohio along with the voter suppression initiatives across the country.
McGarvey asked that attendees drop everything they can to get “our people engaged, get their families and extended families engaged. They have to know what is at stake here,” McGarvey implored. “Don’t think if you live in a state that is in good shape politically that this isn’t going to effect you. If the local Central Labor Council is having a phone bank, get your members to call people in Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania and Florida and tell them why you care about their state living where you live. These guys [the billionaires] aren’t going away. Massive unemployment, in building trades has confused members about why they should vote for Obama over Romney,” McGarvey continued.
“You’ve got work to do, and not just in the presidential race. This all starts at home, it all starts with you and your members we are in the final push…and we have to give it all.”
LIUNA president Terry O’Sullivan was a dynamic closing speaker for the conference. O’Sullivan doesn’t mince words vowing to “fight for workers against the likes of Grover Norquist and all of his tea party extremists” who are out to destroy the working class and union members as a whole.
O’Sullivan told the crowd “this is the most dangerous election of our lifetime what is at stake is the heart and soul of our union, our movement, and our country. On November 6, if Romney wins, if democrats lose control of the senate and republicans keep the house it could mark the end of the union movement as we know it. Instead of taking care of the rich of Wall Street and the corporations, we need to take care of Main Street and America for a change. It is time to elect a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. A government that is going to fight to protect our country and our people. A government that understands that the most valuable asset in our country isn’t Wall Street, isn’t corporate America, it is working class men and women.”
Echoing the sentiment of earlier speakers O’Sullivan reminded the crowd that we need to get our members engaged, hit the streets, phone banking, knock on doors and hand out leaflets like never before.
Additional speakers included Vice Admiral Kevin McCoy, Commander Naval Sea Systems Command and Mike Petters, CEO Huntington Ingalls Industries, who both spoke about shipbuilding and the future of the industry. IAM’s Jim Price on behalf of the Guide Dogs of America; Lynn Tucker, General Vice President IAMAW, Dave Ritchie, General Vice President IAMAW and James Weakley from the Lake Carriers’ Association; Phil Venoit, Business Manager IBEW Local 230; and Fred Myers, Executive Director Union Sportsmen Alliance.