UNITED ELECTRICAL WORKERS VOTE TO ENDORSE RALPH NADER
Erie, Pennsylvania - The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) voted at their annual convention Aug. 30 to endorse Ralph Nader's candidacy for President, saying, "the wasted vote in this election would be for the pro-business Democrats and Republicans."
The 35,000-member independent union represents workers in manufacturing, public sector and private non-profit sector jobs. "Decades of corporate-controlled Democratic and Republican presidencies convince us that we have no choice but to escape the two-party trap," states a resolution passed by UE, which has endorsed just four other presidential candidates in its 65-year history. "Nader's energetic and principled candidacy will bring us closer to real labor law reform, national health care and a challenge to - if not controls on - the power of multinational corporations."
The union praised Nader's pro-labor platform, which calls for triple back pay for workers fired illegally during an organizing drive, expanded power for the National Labor Relations Board to issue injunctions to stop unfair labor practices, a ban on the permanent replacement of strikers, and, most prominently, repeal of the anti-labor Taft-Hartley Act.
The UE is the third union to officially throw its support behind Nader. In June, the 31,000-member California Nurses Association, the largest organization of registered nurses in California, endorsed Nader, praising his "outspoken stance on behalf of an overhaul of the nation's health care system, and strong advocacy of nurses' and patients' rights."
The 1,200-member AFSCME Local 1108 followed with an endorsement of Nader in August. The union of nonprofit workers - which represents Los Angeles area Head Start, child care and social service workers - cited Nader's support of universal health care, expanded child care and better wages for child care workers as reasons for the endorsement.
Nader's history of support for labor rights and his strong pro-labor platform have earned the enthusiastic support of growing numbers of rank-and-file union members, who are organizing Labor for Nader groups in major metropolitan areas around the country. One of the strongest Labor for Nader chapters is in Detroit, Mich., where Nader plans to appear on Labor Day, Sept. 4.
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Paid for by the Nader 2000 General Committee, Inc. P.O. Box 18002, Washington, D.C. 20036