Dallas Labor Victorious!

Mark York Writes on “Power of Unity!”

The power of unity was exemplified in Dallas on election night. Over 50 labor activists took a bus to cruise to four separate election watch parties. We paraded in together to each of them singing “Solidarity Forever,” and the other election activists loved it!

Among the many accolades we received the next day were some from the Texas state AFL-CIO and the national AFL-CIO leadership in Washington DC. They liked the way we used our bus ride and dramatic entrances to remind everybody that Dallas labor played a big role in every success. Even more than that, they admired our success.

Rich Trumka and national AFL-CIO leaders acknowledge Dallas

 Texas labor did well this election. Together, we knocked on more than 210,000 doors. We flipped 12 Texas House seats to labor-endorsed candidates. We helped soar Texas turnout to 8 million voters. Texas AFL-CIO's Summer Lollie coordinated campaign efforts out of the Dallas AFL-CIO office. Her group’s targeted effort resulted in voter turnout that was double other areas, and it paid off on election night. Nationally, AFL-CIO activists helped elect Seven hundred and forty-three union members to public office while turning the House of Representatives from red to blue.

Dallas is an acknowledged star of the labor movement. We flipped five Texas House seats from anti-worker to pro-worker candidates. One of the very worst Texas senators was turned out of office in favor of our candidate. The list of local victories is too long to write. Most impressive of all, we helped get a powerful anti-worker congressman out of office and put in Colin Allred. Allred is a union member with a civil rights background. He boarded our bus on election night to especially thank labor.

Dallas AFL-CIO played an important part in an unprecedented collaboration among different unions, elected officials, outstanding candidates, and the community at large. Unity was boosted because gubernatorial candidate Lupe Valdez and other important political leaders were working together under labor’s roof at the CWA 6215 hall.

We never said it would be easy and it wasn’t. Our participation started way before the primaries with a long and complicated screening process to find the best candidates. Political Director Lorraine Montemayor carefully deployed our resources in outreach efforts. Every time another candidate or group shifted their activities, Lorraine adjusted ours. We didn’t just optimize our efforts, we also helped optimize others!

That’s the power of unity. I congratulate all of you!

--Mark York, Financial Secretary Treasurer, Dallas AFL-CIO

Unionists Continue Planning

Affiliated members of the Dallas AFL-CIO Central Labor Council will meet at 7:30 PM on November 15 at 1408 N Washington. They will take the opportunity to review our successes and look for any weaknesses during the long election period.

There are always big challenges ahead for working families, and planning is always critical. The monthly meetings are the core of labor’s strategy.

Celebrate Veterans

November 11 is Veterans Day. American labor appreciates those who have served. One of the celebrations this year was at UAW Local 848 at their retiree luncheon on November 8. Labor historian Dr. George Green of the University of Texas at Arlington delivered the address. He especially appreciated World War II veteran Dan McGrew, who is 101 years of age.

Veteran Dan McGrew and Dr George Green at UAW 848 

The AFL-CIO asks veterans to join the Union Veterans’ Council

Dallas Rallies for Democracy

On the day after President Trump replaced the Attorney General with one likely to blunt any investigation, more than 100,000 people protested across the nation. About 300 of them were at Dallas City Hall. Speakers speculated that Trump was hoping to avoid public notice by moving immediately after the elections. Others said that he was making a pre-emptive strike against democracy before his opponents take over the House of Representatives with full subpoena power.

Dallas protests for democracy

Dozens of Dallas activists spoke out. One of them, Rose Kimble, said she was old enough to remember Dr Martin Luther King’s demonstrations, but that this was her first protest. She had come out, she revealed, “because it looks like Armageddon.” Armageddon is the end of the world. Kimble went on, “Arma-getting scared!” Kimble is at left in the photo.

A national coalition named “Trump is Not Above the Law” had been preparing for this eventuality. Robert Weissman of Public Citizen wrote, “As bad as things have been, I genuinely fear that our unhinged president is on a path to far more brazen abuses of power, involving Mueller and much more. If that is so, it’s up to us to stop him.”

More Actions Coming Up

Nov 11: Veterans Day 

Nov 15, 7:30P: Dallas AFL-CIO Central Labor Council meeting for all affiliated members at 1408 N Washington. Contact Lorraine Montemayor at [email protected] or 214-448-1557

Nov 20, 7:30P: Tarrant AFL-CIO Central Labor Council meeting for all affiliated members

Nov 25, 2-4PM: Democratic Socialists of America is throwing a “Bread and Roses” potluck for activists groups and invites labor participation. Contact the Welcoming Committee  at [email protected]