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President Biden, meeting with the AFL-CIO leadership and principal officers of international unions on March 5, said once again he will not waiver in his longtime support for the Jones Act, the nation’s freight cabotage law.

The president was responding to a statement from MTD Executive Board Member and SIU Executive Vice President Augie Tellez during the Wilmington, DE, gathering.

Tellez, who attended with MEBA Secretary-Treasurer Roland Rexha and MM&P President Don Marcus, thanked the president for standing with American mariners throughout his career as a Senator and Vice President.

He alerted Biden to new attacks being directed at the Jones Act in the wake of rising petroleum prices because of the Russian attack on Ukraine. The maritime contingent noted recent news columns trying to claim the Jones Act as anti-American.

Tellez also informed the president about the February announcement to create a second registry in the U.S. Virgin Islands that would take away cargo from U.S.-flag ships and jobs from American mariners.

Biden told Tellez, Rexha, Marcus and the other Labor leaders he will continue to fight for American mariners and workers.