From the President: Vote for the Candidate who is Committed to Organized Labor

    

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Workers Memorial Day

As we approach Nov. 8, we should be reminded that every day there are those who have served and those who are serving to protect our freedom here at home and aboard. To honor those men and women it is our civic duty to vote.

Over the years working men and women have heard from both sides of what we refer to as wedge issues!

For example, here are two:

Since 1977 when I got involved, the Republican Party has said that the Democrats are taking my guns. At the time I had two guns. Today, 2016, I have more guns then I did in 1977. I like to shoot and hunt. So in reality there has been no attempt by the Democratic Party to take anyone’s guns, making this a false wedge issue. However, to be honest, there are those in both parties that believe in background checks and closing loopholes in firearm sales and I agree with them. This is my opinion, not a UAW position.

Second issue: Democrats have said since about 1988 that the Republicans are trying to take my Social Security. Today I still pay into my Social Security, and people are still collecting it. However, the Republican Party has tried to privatize Social Security, which means handing it over to investment firms and Wall Street (Ryan Bill). So, the fact is this is a real issue.

What do UAW members and working families need in an elected official?

We need someone who proposes a fair tax plan so that the middle class doesn’t bear the brunt of paying for schools and roads while the wealthiest use loopholes in the tax system to get out of paying their fair share.

Studies show time and again that unions help raise the wages and benefits for all workers — union and nonunion alike. That means we must elect someone who supports organizing and collective bargaining rights so we can build union strength in this country again. We need someone who will support domestic manufacturing with good wages and who will oppose right-to-work laws that diminish collective bargaining rights.

We need someone who proposes a fair tax plan so that the middle class doesn’t bear the brunt of paying for schools and roads while the wealthiest use loopholes in the tax system to get out of paying their fair share.

We need someone who supports creating a livable wage and who will support a higher minimum wage so people who work full time aren’t relying on welfare to make ends meet.

We need a leader who believes in family-friendly work policies like paid family leave so people can take care of sick loved ones without going into debt or losing their jobs to do so.

We must elect a leader who fights employer misclassification, wage theft and workplace exploitation.

We need a leader who will fight against efforts to undermine retirement benefits and enhance Social Security so we can all retire and not live in poverty in our golden years.

We need a president who can give us the best package of all of these things that matter to working families.

Hillary Clinton has stood on the right side of these issues for a long time, with a pro-worker public record that shows she is committed to labor and working families. She doesn’t just talk; she walks the walk. If you’ll look at her record, this is very clear.

As a private citizen, she fought for working families. As first lady, Hillary Clinton helped pass the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which today provides health care to more than 8 million kids.

As a senator, she sponsored a bill linking minimum wage to Congress’ pay raises and voted for no salary increases for Congress until the minimum wage increased. She voted to extend unemployment benefits from 39 weeks to 59 weeks when we needed it the most. She voted to restrict employer interference in union organizing. She voted to increase the minimum wage to $7.25. She co-sponsored the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 which goes a long way toward giving women the right to sue employers who pay them less than their male coworkers. She supported workers’ rights to organize as an original co-sponsor of the Employee Free Choice Act and stood up against attacks on collective bargaining when we needed her. She voted against Fast Track and CAFTA. She endorsed the WAGE Act, which is legislation that would add teeth to the National Labor Relations Act and hold companies that use perm-a-temps liable for labor violations. She supported the auto rescue loans that helped save millions of jobs — our jobs.

It is easy to define her commitment to labor because her record speaks for itself, but let’s talk about something that has affected this union and workers all over the country — trade and jobs.

Hillary Clinton and the UAW believe the key to a prosperous American economy is good union manufacturing jobs. She supports an infrastructure bill (jobs bill) that would put hundreds of thousands of Americans to work. She believes in trade bills that protect the American worker and what’s most important she has shown a willingness to listen and change. Let me be clear, Hillary Clinton has said that NAFTA needs to be renegotiated and on many occasions made public statements she is opposed to TPP because it would harm jobs and wages in the United States. She agrees with our position that any future trade deals must protect the rights of working people.

Hillary Clinton believes that paid family leave, earned sick days, fair schedules, equal pay for women and quality, affordable child care are critical for working families in today’s economy. She believes in unions and will fight for workers’ rights to organize, bargain collectively and retire with security. She said that labor will always have a champion in the White House and a seat at the table if she is president. She has spent her career fighting for working families and she believes that unions are critical to providing safe, good-paying jobs for workers so they can provide for their families. Hillary Clinton is a proven leader who shares our values. The next president will select a Supreme Court justice, a secretary of labor and a labor board that will determine our future. The next president may determine whether our Social Security benefits are secure or turned over to Wall Street. This is why we decided to endorse Hillary Clinton.


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