There was a time when union members voted in their own economic self-interest. They voted for politicians who protected their rights and supported their goals of a larger share of wealth creation for the worker. Union members at one point understood that wealth creation needed to be shared, not hoarded. Unfortunately, this seems to be changing in Massachusetts of all places.
In a new Suffolk University poll, Senator Brown is actually beating Elizabeth Warren 48%-41% in union households, even though Scott Brown has a history of being anti-worker. The Senator voted against unemployment insurance for Massachusetts workers and the BIG vote, the second vote he cast as a U.S. Senator was against a NLRB appointee Becker.
Senator Brown stated, “My first priority, is to create jobs and put people back to work. Craig Becker’s theories about how the workplace should function…would impose new burdens on employers, hurt job creation and slow down the recovery.”
So, in essence, the Senator is saying, if you are pro labor, you will hurt the economy.
Here is a recent article from Cape Cod Today that lays out his anti-Massachusetts record. A few points from the article is, Holding fast to tax cuts for the rich because he opposes “job-killing tax increases at a time when the nation’s economy is so weak.” (DHG-8/11/11), Rejection of Rebuild America Jobs Act to provide $245 billion in tax incentives and $100 billion for state aid and new infrastructure spending to be paid for with a 5.6% increase in taxes for upper-income folks. Would have brought thousands of jobs to Massachusetts. Finally, Supported an amendment that would have excluded airport security screeners from having collective bargaining rights.
The problem in the polling isn’t the candidate. It is the unions in Massachusetts themselves. For decades unions used to put their money into educating their members. The term is called COPE, committee on political education. The members were educated in the anti-worker stances and the pro worker stances of all candidates. Today, the money is going directly to candidates. This is the problem!
Many union members are being inundated with conservative talk radio, every hour of the day in Massachusetts. This is literally only ONE major progressive radio station in Massachusetts, the rest, including small stations have all conservatives all the time.
So union members only hear one side of the argument all day long and it is hammered into their heads. This has been a long time in the making. Conservative radio is covering the country and no it’s not because nobody listens to progressive radio, it is because corporations like, Cumulus and Clear channel own the market share and do not allow progressive talkers on. This has just happened in California, in a progressive area called San Francisco, Green 960 just changed its format to feature Glenn Beck.
What unions need to do is educate their members and level the playing field in media rather than putting money into politicians’ pockets. They need to buy ads, or even better buy entire time slots in every major radio market. Their voice is not being heard, they need to get back to their roots and back into political education, if not, this is exactly what happens.
This is in Massachusetts, if union members are willing to cut off their nose in spite of their face there, how bad do you think it is in places like Georgia and Florida.