Stewart Acuff

Apr 10

Broadening the Campaign for the Employee Free Choice Act

Today at noon Mayor Carl Redus of Pine Bluff, Arkansas hosted a meeting for the AFL-CIO with the Arkansas Conference of Black Mayors. Twenty or so mayors were at the lunch meeting at the Pine Bluff Ramada Conference Center.

The mayors agreed to write Senator Lincoln individual letters asking her to support the Employee Free Choice Act. At their next meeting they will consider a formal resolution of support. When the Arkansas Conference of Black Mayors passes that resolution, they will join the Arkansas Legislative Black Caucus and the Arkansas Democratic Party Black Caucus in formally supporting and pressing for the Employee Free Choice Act.

And so, the campaign to pass the Employee Free Choice Act continues to broaden. At Senator Lincoln’s office in Little Rock — also today — the AFL-CIO‘s community affiliate, Working America, delivered another thousand handwritten letters.

Also, today in D.C. the AFL-CIO releases 1000 businesses who have signed on to support the Employee Free Choice Act. Three hundred of those businesses are in Arkansas.

Both nationally and in targeted states, every element of the Democratic Party is stepping up to demand that Democratic Senators support the Employee Free Choice Act.

Democratic mayors and state legislators have the small political organizations that keep their creators elected and are called on to deliver the energy, enthusiasm, and votes to elect Democrats statewide. Black elected officials and union leaders and activist are central to Democratic Get Out the Vote operations. Democrats don’t win statewide elections without them. Some members of the U.S. Senate have made decisions to support the Employee Free Choice Act based on principle and values. Some are making political calculations. The AFL-CIO is painstakingly making the political calculations for Members of the Senate: Black elected officials, faith leaders, small businesses, community organizations, union members and activists. All are necessary for Democratic victories each November. All are calling for passage of the Employee Free Choice Act.

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Originally blogged at The Huffington Post on June 8, 2009

Written by Stewart Acuff, former organizing Director of the AFL-CIO, and current Chief of Staff at the Utility Workers Union of America

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