Under the Trump administration many union leaders have signaled that the labor movement has been slowed down. They have newfound hope from President-elect Biden, who some say will be the most union-friendly president in decades.
United Steelworkers (USW) District 1 Director and North Coast Area Labor Federation (NCALF) President Pat Gallagher discussed increased enthusiasm for unions under President-elect Biden, how union members voted and more on America’s Work Force Union Podcast.
Union enthusiasm for President-elect Biden
After roughing the weather of the Trump administration and a federal government that is staffed with anti-union appointees and workers, Gallagher is optimistic the Biden administration will bring a wave of union optimism.
He said that the Biden transition team has called on union leaders to shape policies, giving them a seat at the table, something they did not have under President Trump.
Having union leaders involved in the transition and having discussions with President-elect Biden, union leaders are confident the Department of Labor will be worker-friendly and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
The union vote
In 2016, union members took favor in voting for President Trump. The story in 2020 is different as more than 50 percent of union members voted for the former Vice President.
Gallagher said the USW reached out to both President Trump and the Biden campaign to complete a survey that included issues close to the USW. President-elect Biden provided robust answers that satisfied the curiosity of the USW. President Trump ignored the USW and did not answer.
Turnout in Ohio
Being the NCALF president, Gallagher was disappointed with the voter turnout in Cleveland, OH. He also said a couple of labor-friendly candidates lost races in the state.
He was disappointed with how different cities voted in the election. Blue-collar suburbs of Cleveland went heavily for President Trump, including some of the most union dense areas.