Monday, August 29, 2011

Organized Labor to Seek Divorce from Democratic Party

A Split That Benefits Both Groups

Politico is reporting that the AFL-CIO will sever its long term relationship with Democrats.

Going forward, Trumka (AFL-CIO Head)  said, the labor movement will build up its own political structures and organizations rather than contribute to and depend on the Democratic Party’s political operation.

This is good news for Democrats, and may even be good news for labor.

The Democratic Party has been too long dependent on organized labor for both money and election support.  Furthermore, the ability of organized labor to provide money and support is declining and may well decline significantly in the future.  In order to survive the Democratic Party must develop its own funding and support structure.  The removal of the union support should force the Democratic Party to accelerate this process.

For the unions, it is not clear what they will be trying to accomplish.

“We’re going to use a lot of our money to build structures that work for working people” Trumka said. “You’re going to see us give less money to build structures for others, and more of our money will be used to build our own structure.”

Exactly what that means is not clear. There is not going to be a “Labour Party” in the U. S. like there is in Britain.  And labor, like Democrats needs to recognize reality, that currently momentum is not with them, but against them, and that they need to proactively act if they are not going to become an even more irrelevant part of the political and economic landscape.

Maybe they are getting the message.

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