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Latest News - May 2012

May 6, 2012
Trumka: AFL-CIO Establishing 'Permanent Campaign Structure'
Source: National Journal
By: Kelsey Snell

After several years of deep disappointments, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said America’s largest labor organization is shifting away from blanket campaign spending on Democrats to target “friends,” including President Obama.

“We’re going to put together a permanent campaign structure,” Trumka said Sunday on C-SPAN’s Newsmakers. “I’d say there’s a couple of kind of candidates....there’s real friends, there’s acquaintances and there’s enemies. Acquaintances will probably get less and friends will probably get more help.”

In the past the AFL-CIO funneled large cash donations to the Democratic party to fund candidates as party leaders saw fit. But this year Trumka has said that Democrats can’t depend on labor funding just by virtue of their party affiliation. Instead, funds will be funneled to candidates with a strong labor record.

Trumka made it clear that he includes President Obama on that list of labor’s “friends.” Over the past several years, Trumka has often criticized Obama for prioritizing deficit reduction over job creation and failing to advance union-bolstering legislation like the Employee Free Choice Act.

But that history of critique pales in comparison to labor’s distrust of GOP candidate Mitt Romney.

“The Republican party has said, from Mitt Romney on down, they are against workers,” he said “It’s not about fairness, it’s not about enforcing the law, it’s about making [labor] weaker.”

Trumka also renewed his call for the resignation of National Labor Relations Board member Terence Flynn, who has been accused of funneling private information to Romney campaign staff.

“He’s shown that he is no longer capable of neutral decisions,” Trumka said. “[The NLRB] is supposed to be an independent agency that takes facts and tries cases and decides who wins under the law. When you have someone who is already committed to the other’s like a judge talking to one of the lawyers in the middle of the case. That’s wrong. It calls the whole system into question



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