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"One on None"

Teachers, Utility Workers and President Obama getting out the vote

Kris LaGrange's picture
Oct 19, 2016

The 2016 Presidential Election is now less than 3 weeks away and in some states voting has already begun.  Many states have different Early Voting rules; some allow you to vote by mail, some allow you to vote in person and some require a reason to vote early.  With such an important election coming up, President Obama, and Vice President Joe Biden are encouraging you to go out and vote early.  President Obama has even come out with a comical new video about the importance of voting early.  Check it out.


While the Presidential campaign has consumed most of the attention this election season, down ballot races hold a lot of importance for the union movement.  In New York, Long Island Teachers have launched a campaign to remind teachers to vote for education friendly legislators at the state and local levels.  These are the men and women who will determine issues like teacher due process, linking student test scores to teacher evaluations, and the future of Common Core.  The radio ad are running on local radio as well as Pandora until the Election.  You can listen to it here.

In Pennsylvania, many unions like IBEW 777 are making phone calls and knocking on doors every day for a host of Senate and Congressional candidates.  The Keystone state is not only a swing state for President, but is also a key state for the Democrats if they want to take back the Senate.  Pennsylvania has a few important Congressional races that may tip the balance of power in the House of Representatives. The future of organized labor hangs in the balance as the new Senate will get to choose who is appointed to the Supreme Court, either giving life to cases like Friedrichs or putting the final nail in the case’s coffin.

Across the country, organized labor is getting active to combat the anti-union corporate interests.  In a statement from the AFL-CIO, the labor federation said that over 100,000 people will spend the next three weeks knocking on over 1 Million doors in battleground states. They will also be mailing out 1.4 Million slate cards, telling voters who the union friendly candidates are on the ballot. Voters can bring these cards to the polls with them to make sure that they vote for the candidates that will protect collective bargaining! 

In some states, Right to Work (for less) is literally on the ballot.  In other states, like Massachusetts, charter school expansion is on the ballot. Not only is hate, bullying and intolerance on the ballot this year, but so too is the future of the labor movement. The Democratic National Committee has set up a great site to find out how you can register to vote and when where and how you can cast your ballot.  Check out for more information.

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