The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers quickly backed Beechcraft’s protest announcement. “I don’t know why the U.S. government is bending over backward to accommodate Brazil in the midst of sequestration, but this is a real blow to American workers and taxpayers,” says Tom Buffenbarger, the union president. “The claim by Embraer that most of their plane would be ‘built in the USA’ adds insult to the injury of the 1,400 jobs that will be destroyed here at home.”
These are jobs associated with Beechcraft’s T-6 work that would transfer to the LAS line if the company had won.
Though these arguments may garner support in Congress, they are not necessarily grounds for a protest unless the Air Force included them in the source-selection criteria and either misrepresented them or did not follow its own stated process in choosing a winner.
Eight-six percent of the parts for the A-29 are sourced from U.S. or allied countries, says Taco Gilbert, business development vice president for Sierra Nevada’s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance business.