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BREAKING: Auto workers union backs Joe Biden for President

by Paul Goldberg
BREAKING: Auto workers union backs Joe Biden for President

The United Auto Workers, one of the largest and influential unions has officially endorsed Joe Biden for President.

The union President issued the following statement on Twitter:

“In these dangerous and difficult times, the country needs a president who will demonstrate clear, stable leadership, less partisan acrimony and more balance to the rights and protections of working Americans.” – UAW President Rory Gamble

Fox News reports the United Auto Workers – one of the nation’s largest and influential unions – on Tuesday endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden’s White House bid.

In backing the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, UAW President Rory Gamble said Tuesday that “in these dangerous and difficult times, the country needs a president who will demonstrate clear, stable leadership, less partisan acrimony and more balance to the rights and protections of working Americans.”

The union represents roughly 400,000 workers nationwide but has an outsized influence in the crucial general election battleground state of Michigan – as it represents some 150,000 workers with Detroit’s three major automakers. The UAW also represents factory workers in other industries as well as nurses, casino workers, and university graduate assistants.

The UAW’s backing is the latest for Biden by a major organized labor group. The presumptive Democratic nominee’s long touted his working-class roots in Pennsylvania and his decades of support for the unions. Biden’s also highlighted the 2009 auto bailouts that saved General Motors and Chrysler from slipping into bankruptcy and that he championed as vice president in the Obama administration.

The UAW usually backs Democrats in presidential elections – including Hillary Clinton in 2016. But its workers don’t always vote as a monolithic bloc and plenty of the rank and file voted for Donald Trump four years ago. Trump narrowly flipped Michigan as well as Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – two other states with a smaller percentage of UAW members – from blue to red in 2016, helping him win the White House.

From UAW.com

The UAW International Board Tuesday announced the influential unions’ endorsement of former Vice President Joe Biden for President of the United States.

“In these dangerous and difficult times, the country needs a president who will demonstrate clear, stable leadership, less partisan acrimony and more balance to the rights and protections of working Americans,” said Rory Gamble, President of the UAW. “UAW Members need a federal government that ensures that members have both a good job to go to, and that they come home to their families at night having earned a fair day’s wage in a safe and secure place.”

Over the last four years, UAW members have seen an assault on worker rights to organize and fair wages, NLRB rules that impede organizing and anti-worker federal appointees.

Biden has committed to a plan that will:

  • Reign in the abuse of corporate power over working people and hold corporate executives personally accountable for violations of labor laws.
  • Encourage and incentivize unionization and collective bargaining; and
  • Ensure that workers are treated with dignity and receive the pay, benefits and workplace protections they deserve.
  • Ensure we expand access to affordable quality health care.

In recent days, the UAW has been negotiating for enhanced safety standards over COVID-19 return-to-work policies. “This issue demonstrates the need for Presidential leadership to follow the guidance of science and give workers a seat in discussions over their safety and well-being. Now it is time for workers to take their place at the table.”

Biden’s experience in the Obama-Biden Administration during the successful auto recovery will be instrumental as the industry experiences massive changes in technology and jobs in auto and other UAW sectors.

“In a changing economic environment, we need steady leadership and planning to make sure the jobs of the future are good-paying union jobs with benefits,” said Gamble. “And UAW members need to know they have a voice in those changes.”

Gamble added that it is important to have leadership that, at all times, considers the needs of working men and women in making policy choices, and judicial appointments. “UAW members ultimately want a voice. And Joe Biden is committed to giving UAW members that voice at the table.”

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