November 13, 2016
By Doug Cunningham
Workers Independent News
Washington, DC – AFL-CIO President Rich Trumka says more than anything the presidential election was an indictment of politics as usual.
Trumka says for too long political elites embraced economic policies that “hold down wages, increase inequality, diminish opportunity and ship American jobs overseas.”
Trump made many promises to workers on trade, restoring manufacturing and reviving communities.Trumka says the labor movement will work to make promises of better lives for working people real. Labor will work with the new president if he’s willing to work with labor.
But Trumka says labor can never back down from its values. He says the campaign’s racism, misogyny and anti-immigrant appeals caused damage that must be repaired.
The labor movement, Trumka says, is more committed than ever to help working people win a voice on the job and in our democracy.
UAW President Dennis Williams says since Trump disagreed with the Republican Party on trade and that could be an area where the new GOP President might actually do something that helps workers.
[Dennis Williams]: “He wasn’t a friend of the Republican Party. He actually set the Republican Party upside down in the philosophy of trade. Because they believe in free trade without any barriers, right? He don’t.
His argument about a lot of these things were not in line with the Republican Party. So he is an individual like we have not seen before. So when I see that I don’t see the traditional Republican President. I see somebody who made a lot of commitment to blue-collar workers about fairness and of their right to be part of the American dream.
And that to me means rebuilding the middle class and having greater opportunities. We’re gonna see what he says compared with what he does.”
Voters in Arizona, Colorado and Maine voted Tuesday to raise minimum wages for over two million workers. The wage will be raised to $12 an hour.
Washington voted to raise the state minimum wage to $13.50. But therse wages won’t fully phase in until 2020.
The Economic Policy Institute says legislative minimum wage increases passed earlier this year in California, New York, Oregon, the District of Columbia and roughly a dozen cities and counties helped millions more workers.
Families USA says Trump’s election means it is on a “Total War Footing” in a fight to save the Affordable Care Act.
Twenty million Americans who didn’t have it before got healthcare insurance under the ACA. Families USA says pealing this law will have tragic consequences for tens of millions of people.
The group says it will fight hard to try to stop the repeal. Limits on insurance company behaviors like denying coverage or hiking rates for previously existing conditions or removing lifetime limits on coverage would be wiped out if the ACA is repealed.