The Boston Globe recently described how Massachusetts union officials can’t agree on which gubernatorial candidate to support (“State labor unions fault records of Reilly, Patrick,” Feb. 13, 2006 http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2006/02/13/state_labor_unions_fault_records_of_reilly_patrick/).
As far as the concerns of working people go, neither of the announced major Democratic Party candidates measures up (and the likely Republican certainly won’t either).
That makes 2006 a good year to take a different political approach — one favored by most union members.
Opinion research commissioned by the national AFL-CIO shows that when it comes to politics, the majority of members want information — not orders — from their unions. They want to know about the key issues, not partisan agendas.
Instead of endorsements, union members want timely and well-researched data about where the candidates stand on the issues most important to them.
Union resources could be put to better use by registering and turning out more voters and getting union members better organized to hold whomever is elected more accountable. Instead of letting politics divide us, this approach would help unite more members regardless of their political affiliation.