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November 2018, Week 2

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 		 [AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka says the midterm elections
showed how unions are dismantling a broken system that expects workers
to work harder and longer and produce more wealth than ever
before—but take home the same or even less.] [https://portside.org/]


 PORTSIDE LABOR 

 AFL-CIO PRESIDENT: HOW WORKING PEOPLE DEFINED THE MIDTERM ELECTIONS
 
[https://portside.org/2018-11-13/afl-cio-president-how-working-people-defined-midterm-elections]


 

 Richard L. Trumka 
 November 13, 2018
Yahoo Finance
[https://finance.yahoo.com/news/afl-cio-president-working-people-defined-midterm-election-151321046.html]


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 _ AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka says the midterm elections
showed how unions are dismantling a broken system that expects workers
to work harder and longer and produce more wealth than ever
before—but take home the same or even less. _ 

 "The labor movement unleashed an unprecedented political program this
year," says AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka. "Across the country,
union members made the difference, fighting for our issues, for union
candidates and for our proven allies." , AP Photo/Alex Brandon) 

 

There was plenty of punditry plastered across cable news last week.
But, as the dust settles, there is one story that has come to define
this election: working people standing together to make a difference.
The labor movement unleashed an unprecedented political program this
year. Across the country, union members made the difference, fighting
for our issues, for union candidates and for our proven allies.

Over the last few months, we knocked on more than 2.3 million doors
and distributed 5 million fliers at more than 4,600 worksites. That
represents millions of conversations between fellow union members,
talking earnestly about the opportunity we embraced in this
election—a chance to stand up and demand the fairer economy and more
just society that we deserve.

That issue-focused, member-to-member communication extended to every
part of our organizing operation, from a 12-million-piece direct mail
program to the largest digital ad campaign in our history.

At the heart of every effort we made, there was a powerful advantage
unique to the labor movement: working people trust our unions. In
fact, persuadable voters trust unions more than any other source of
political information, including friends and family. We earned that
trust and built on it, mobilizing our members to the polls.

The result was game changing. We’re filling the halls of power with
our own. More than 900 union members were elected to office last week,
including a U.S. Senator, two governors and at least 18 U.S. House
members.

We’re also tossing out the hand-picked politicians who have
dutifully served corporate interests at the expense of working
families. It gave me no small pleasure waking up last Wednesday
knowing that Scott Walker and Bruce Rauner will be packing their bags
in the coming weeks. But, it gives me even greater confidence knowing
that we elected an army of pro-worker governors all across America,
not just in Wisconsin and Illinois, but Nevada, Maine and even Kansas.

Working people took an important step forward last week. From state
houses and governor’s mansions to Capitol Hill, we are building the
foundation for a brighter future. And we are ready to hold our elected
leaders accountable to their promises, and do our part to win a
pro-worker policy agenda. 

We’re tired of a corporate-controlled government and a corporate-run
economy. We aren’t standing for politicians who listen to the
whispers of a few CEOs and ignore the voices of working families.
We’re dismantling a broken system that expects us to work harder and
longer and produce more wealth than ever before—but take home the
same or even less.

We’re doing the work of ending that injustice. There’s an energy
unlike anything I’ve seen in my 50 years in the labor movement—an
urgency to demand something better. We’re organizing. We’re
marching. We’re striking. We’re fighting for our most fundamental
rights and dignities on the job. And, as we made clear last week,
we’re making ourselves heard loud and clear at the ballot box.

_Richard L. Trumka is the president of the AFL-CIO, the largest labor
federation in the United States with over 12.5 million members and 55
affiliated unions._

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