Vets, Labor to Weigh-In on Elections
St. Paul, MN - Minnesota's veterans who are also union members say they want to make sure their voices are heard during this year's election. Diane O'Brien with the AFL-CIO says the union will meet later today to form a statewide vet-labor council. She says they'll work on plans to help elect candidates who will champion causes important to veterans and all working people.
"This election is going to be about policy choices and the direction our country will take for years to come. It's no secret that most Americans think the country is on the wrong tack. Veterans and union members want to make sure that we vote to get our country back on the right track."
O'Brien says the new group will focus on both the candidates and the issues, and hopes to make a difference in the fall elections. She calls the organizing "bread and butter"-driven.
"Pocketbook issues, kitchen table economic issues, however you choose to frame them, are important. An economy that works for all is clearly an issue for union veterans and union members as a whole. Our economy needs to change for the better, and the belief is that we need to elect leaders who can bring about that change."
Similar "Veterans Councils" are being formed in a dozen other states across the country today.
O'Brien says the groups feel they can have more say in the elections if they join forces.
"Veterans issues need more attention. Union veterans know the power that comes from organizing and standing together with others who share similar concerns. And that's why they're joining union veterans councils, to make sure their issues are addressed during the 2008 political campaign and during the elections."
Further information regarding the formation of the veterans council is online at www.mnaflcio.org/.