The International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) has begun running television ads in several states in support of President Obama's bill that would help hire firefighters, police officers and teachers.
The bill has $35 billion in funding to help pay for staffing at fire and police departments across the country as well as at schools — that includes $1 billion in funding to protect firefighters' jobs. The IAFF estimates that 15,000 firefighter and paramedic jobs have been lost or are threatened due to lack of funds.
The ad has firefighters urging people to call their senators to ask them to vote for the bill. The television ad is slated to run in Washington, D.C., and in at least seven states: Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Montana, Nebraska, Virginia and West Virginia.
A spokesman for the union couldn't estimate how much the ad buy would cost.
"We are saturating those states and focusing on television viewers who watch cable news," said Bill Glanz, the IAFF spokesman.
Several other unions, including the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and the National Education Association, have run television and radio ads in support of job-creation measures pushed by the president.
The IAFF will have members present at a press conference on Capitol Hill Wednesday to push for the legislation. Vice President Biden is expected to attend.