Teamsters Endorse Obama
Union to Put Boots on the Ground for Re-Election Effort
The Teamsters Union endorsed President Barack Obama for re-election with the enthusiastic support of 2,000 members gathered at the annual Unity Conference.
Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa threw the question out to the assembled Teamsters. “Do we want to endorse Barack Obama for president?” The response was a resounding “yes” and a standing ovation.
The General Executive Board had given Hoffa the authority to endorse Obama the night before. Several Vice Presidents spoke from the floor and urged him to make the endorsement as soon as possible.
“If we think the war on workers is tough right now, put Mitt Romney in office and you’ll see how tough it is,” said International Vice President John Coli.
Enthusiasm for Obama was equaled if not exceeded by dislike of Romney, described as a “vulture capitalist.” Loud booing was the answer to Hoffa’s question, “Does anybody want Mitt Romney.”
Shortly after the endorsement, Teamsters inside the conference hall got a surprise phone call from the president himself. He told them America would look a lot different without them.
General President Hoffa gave Obama the news that the Teamsters had just endorsed his re-election. “They realize there’s a war on workers and they realize there’s only one person fighting that fight. That’s you,” Hoffa said. “Go get ‘em, we endorse you all the way.”
The president’s voice came over the loudspeaker. “Thank you for the endorsement,” Obama said. “In these years that I’ve been in office, I’ve seen and appreciated how you support the American economy and social justice, a tradition that goes back more than 100 years. America would look a lot different without the Teamsters.”
Obama said the biggest question over the next few years is how to reclaim security for the middle class after a decade in which the middle class has taken it on the chin. “That starts with putting people back to work,” Obama said.
Obama recounted the challenges he faced when he took office: “We lost more jobs in the month I took office than we did in the previous 60 years,” he said. Since 2010, his administration created more than 400,000 manufacturing jobs—many of them in the auto industry.
The president told the Teamsters that America needs to restore some basic values that made this country great, beginning with rewarding work instead of speculation.
“We have boots on the ground, justice in our hearts and we’re going to win in November. We’ve got your back,” Hoffa told Obama.
Replied Obama, “I’ve got yours. I could not be prouder to have your endorsement.”