President Joe Biden expressed support for the Bessmer, Alabama Amazon employees who are attempting to unionize the warehouse there.
In a video message, Biden stated, “We should encourage unions. So let me be really clear: it’s not up to me to decide whether anyone should join a union.”
“But let me be even more clear: it’s not up to an employer to decide that either. The choice to join a union is up to the workers – full stop.” Biden also sent out a tweet in support of the Alabama workers.
Union membership has declined over the past three decades, a CNBC report states that in 1983, 20.1% of employed Americans belonged to a union, by 2019, that number had dropped to 10.3%.
In December of 2020, then President-elect Joe Biden vowed to be “the most pro-union president you’ve ever seen.”
Workers in Alabama – and all across America – are voting on whether to organize a union in their workplace. It’s a vitally important choice – one that should be made without intimidation or threats by employers.
Every worker should have a free and fair choice to join a union. pic.twitter.com/2lzbyyii1g
— President Biden (@POTUS) March 1, 2021
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Joe Biden has always portrayed himself as a blue-collar guy. His 2020 presidential campaign began at a Pittsburgh union hall.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said of Biden, “Joe’s a blue-collar guy. he comes from a blue-collar background, and he never forgot where he comes from.”
There are other union members who might see it differently.
On Joe Biden’s first day in office, the office of the President of the United States that thousands of union voters helped him win, one of his first tasks was to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline project.
According to TC Energy, over 1,000 full-time union jobs and thousands of future and temporary jobs were affected by that move.
Biden’s climate czar John Kerry suggested that the displaced workers could build solar panels.
At the time of the Keystone XL Pipeline cancelation, Trumka expressed disappointment at Biden’s decision.
AFL-CIO head Richard Trumka on Sunday voiced his criticism of Joe Biden's decision to revoke the permit of the Keystone XL Pipeline, a move that directly eliminates 11,000 jobs and could affect 60,000 more. https://t.co/RaMFUjsi5U
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) February 8, 2021
Other unions also criticized the move:
#Pipeline construction has been a lifeline for many #LIUNA members across the country. The anticipated decision to cancel the #KeystonePipeline will kill thousands of good-paying #UNION jobs! #pipelinesarelifelines #energy pic.twitter.com/p0BxD1vPHV
— LIUNA (@LIUNA) January 20, 2021
"It makes you want to give up." Keystone workers feel left behind by Biden executive orders https://t.co/XTDek516ev
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 6, 2021
Democrats love to tell everyone that they are the party of the working man.
A short trip down memory lane reminds us that not too long ago, a young freshman Congresswoman named Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez fought viciously to stop an Amazon warehouse from being built in her district in New York.
Even New York Governor Andrew Cuomo blasted AOC, saying “a small group of politicians put their own narrow political interests above their community.”
Cuomo said the new warehouse would have brought “at least 25,000-40,000 good paying jobs for our state and nearly $30 billion dollars in new revenue to fund transit improvements, new housing, schools and countless other quality-of-life improvements.”
Now, AOC is making another demand of Amazon – to allow the Alabama workers to unionize.
Why didn’t AOC instead fight to build the warehouse in NYC and then fight to unionize the workers there?
Amazon workers have the right to form a union.
Anti-union tactics like these, especially from a trillion-dollar company trying to disrupt essential workers from organizing for better wages and dignified working conditions in a pandemic, are wrong. https://t.co/nTDqMUapYs
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 6, 2021
If workers voted to join the union, they will be joining the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU).
On Sunday, RWDSU President Stuart Appelbaum said in a statement, “Thank you President Biden for sending a clear message of support for the BAmazon Union workers in Alabama seeking to bring the first union to an amazon warehouse with the RWDSU.”
Appelbaum went on to say, “As President Biden points out, the best way for working people to protect themselves and their families is by organizing into unions.”
According to the Daily Caller, Amazon is advocating that their employees not unionize, and are leaving flyers around in restrooms and other employee areas against organization.
The vote began Feb. 8 and runs through March 29.
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