defence Firms Warn Of Tens Of Thousands Of Job Cuts

Abrams M1 Main Battle TankThe Abrams M1 Main Battle Tank

Photo: flikr/MATEUS_27:25&25

Whether it’s political gamesmanship, or a serious warning, McCain has released letters from three major defence firms that confirm they are sending warnings to their personnel about massive layoffs prior to the Nov. 4 election date.Philip Ewing of Politico reports that the specific defence firms are Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems and EADS North America. Along with them, 10 other defence firms—including Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and General Dynamics—have written McCain letters stating that they are “leaving open the possibility” of sending lay-off letters out to their employees.

McCain said in a statement, “The looming threat of sequestration cuts is forcing companies to delay hiring and capital investments, which, in turn, contributes to the sluggishness of the economy and continuing high unemployment rates.”

The companies all sent letters to McCain stating their worries over “sequestration”—the automatic across-the-board cuts to defence and entitlements set to happen Jan. 1—and warning that moving forward with the plan will cost the U.S. so many jobs that it might throw the country back into recession.

“(The cuts) will undoubtedly lead to facility closures and significant job loss. It will disrupt our advanced manufacturing operations, erode our engineering expertise and capability and accelerate the loss of critical skills and knowledge,” said Lockheed CEO Robert Stevens.

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