On a Zoom call this week, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) kicked off the final phase of their CWA Votes 2020 program to get out the vote for pro-worker candidates. In addition to working hard to turn back Trump’s anti-worker tide by electing Joe Biden, CWA members have been focusing their efforts on key Senate races to flip the Senate over the past year -- a push that is particularly important as Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans have shamelessly blocked crucial aid like the HEROES Act for working people during the pandemic.
On the call, CWA President Chris Shelton, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, and CWA activists in key electoral states highlighted just how crucial the final push in the last 77 days before Election Day is towards repairing the damage that Trump and COVID-19 have done to our communities.
"Trump has ignored the advice of public health experts and has allowed COVID-19 to spread at the worst rate in the world, he's stoked the flames of racial hatred, and he has stood in the way of critical assistance for the unemployed and failed to keep public employees on the job to provide badly-needed services,” said CWA President Chris Shelton. “The difference between succeeding in this election and failing could not be greater. We need to do every last thing that we can to win this election in the time between now and Election Day.”
"Donald Trump sold American workers a phony populism to make them feel like he was on their side, and he betrayed them,” said Senator Sherrod Brown. “His division and distraction are not going to work this time – not when President Trump and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have no plan to combat this virus and no plan to protect workers. This week, Democrats are showing the American people our vision to take on Wall Street and the corporate business model that treats workers as expendable, and to build a better system out of the ashes of this failed presidency. When you love this country, you fight for the people who make it work -- that’s what CWA workers do every day, and it’s what we are all going to do between now and November."
During the pandemic, CWA members have come up with creative ways to talk to union members and voters about these elections, including using different tools like Zoom, Slack, and GroupMe to build a virtual volunteer community, using Hustle and Hubdialer to directly connect with union members, and using social media to educate members on key issues for working people. They’ve gotten on Zoom together to text bank union members, organized tele-town halls to enable CWA members to ask candidates and legislators questions directly, and participated in virtual political boot camp trainings to build their skills.
“If we want real change next year and real progress for working people, we need to not only elect the top of the ticket — we need to flip the Senate,” said Fernando Roman, Executive Vice Pres. of CWA Local 7026 in Tucson. “Here in Arizona, CWA members are working hard to make sure we elect Mark Kelly in November so we can actually pass pro-worker legislation like the PRO Act, the Public Service Freedom to Negotiate Act, the HEROES Act, and other critical aid to help our nation recover from the pandemic.
“The Trump administration has been a disaster for working people. His union-busting NLRB has been dismantling workers’ rights to organize, and he’s completely abandoned us during the pandemic,” said Meeca Miller-Brooks, a member of IUE-CWA Local 84758 from Dayton, Ohio. “Joe Biden will put appointees in at the Labor Department and the NLRB who actually care about workers. Instead of chipping away at our rights, Biden wants to pass labor law reform to expand them. The choice couldn’t be more clear in November for union members. IUE-CWA members in Ohio and across the country will be working hard to elect Biden-Harris in November."