IAM challengers file protest of election results

By Dan Catchpole Herald Writer

The reform candidates who were unsuccessful in the Machinists union’s recent general election have filed a protest disputing the results with the U.S. Department of Labor.

The incumbent leaders of the the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) won the election by a two-to-one margin. The results have to be certified by the Labor Department, which is overseeing the election.

The challengers, a group called IAM Reform, filed the protest Friday. The details were not immediately available. But earlier the group alleged that incumbents broke labor election laws, including threatening to fire national and local staff members who didn’t campaign for them and using union funds for their campaign.

The leadership of the union in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, have denied those allegations, saying that members voted for the more-experienced and capable ticket.

The election was a re-run of last year’s general election. The Labor Department found that union leaders had skewed the nomination process to hamper competition, and IAM leaders agreed to run the election again rather than face legal action.