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Garamendi announces labor endorsements

By Lisa Vorderbrueggen
Thursday, April 30th, 2009 at 4:04 pm in Congressional District 10.

Lt. Governor John Garamendi

Lt. Governor John Garamendi

State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord

State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord

Let the labor wars begin.

Tenth Congressional District candidate and Lt. Governor John Garamendi just announced a long list of state and international labor endorsements. It’s a move intended, in part, to counteract one of his chief opponent’s strong local labor ties.

State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord, has already secured endorsements from the Contra Costa Central Labor Council and the Contra Costa Building Trades Council, umbrella organizations for more than 100 local union chapters.

It is not unusual for labor entities at different levels to support different candidates, particularly in cases where labor likes more than one candidate in a race.

For Garamendi, the higher-level unions often control political action committees, or PACs, which can contribute money to his campaign.

On the other side of the coin, the local chapters can put boots on the ground to help get out the vote for DeSaulnier. Turnout is critical in special elections where far fewer voters participate.

Here is Garamendi’s press release:

SACRAMENTO — Lieutenant Governor John Garamendi enjoys strong support from key labor unions in the event he becomes a candidate for California’s 10th Congressional district.

That seat is presently held by Rep. Ellen Tauscher, who has been nominated to Undersecretary of State for Arms Control Policy; if and when she resigns, Garamendi expects to become a candidate in the special election.

“My friends in labor were the first to ask me to look at this unexpected opportunity,” said Garamendi, “and I’m honored by their early pledges of support.  I have stood with labor in many important struggles over the years, and one of my top priorities in Washington will be passage of the Employee Free Choice Act.”

“With everything going on in the nation, it is crucial that we have someone with the knowledge of the lieutenant governor to replace the experienced leadership of Congresswoman Tauscher in Washington, D.C.,” AFSCME Local 3299 President Lakesha Harrison said in a statement.

Here is a partial list of labor groups that have announced their support for Garamendi for Congress:

AFSCME: American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
CNA: California Nurses Association

CFT: California Federation of Teachers
UFCW: United Food & Commercial Workers
CSEA: California School Employees Association
Laborers International Union of North America
International Union of Operating Engineers

CWA: Communication Workers of America

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  • freakofthefarright

    GARAMENDI IS GOING TO BE CRUSHED BY DESAULNIER. NO ROOTS IN THE DISTRICT. IT IS TIME FOR HIM TO RETIRE!

  • A.J. Fardella

    DeSaulnier is by far the better person for the job. He is local and very involved everywhere in our community. Garamendi’s bid here is ill advised. His endorsements are not from local unions. Carpetbagger is the word that comes into my mind.

  • Jim E.Kelly

    Let the Labor Wars Begin? How about a candidate that will end US Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq? Where do they stand on a cut of of funds and calling for a date for all troops out of the middle east?

    I want a candidate committed to a REAL end of the REAL wars. Let THAT battle begin!!1

  • Rich

    These are all Sacramento based labor unions which is fitting because Gartamendi is a Sacramento based politician. He’s trying to morph himself into a Contra Costan for this race but that won’t fly. I’ve been an activist Democrat for 30 years in Contra Costa. When I heard Garamendi was running to represent Contra Costa I thought it was an April’s fools joke. He has no ties to the district! He will have to hire a local political consultant to whisper in his ear every time a voter questions him about a local issue. He has zero knowledge of Contra Costa. He’ll be like a ventriliquist dummy, he will be doing a modern day version of the Edgar Bergen- Charlie McCarthy act when he campaigns, with Garamendi being the Charlie McCarthy figurine. It’s just ludicrous he’s running. for this seat.

  • Rich

    Desaulnier has the endorsement of Tom Torlakson, and that endorsement is gold. Torlakson is the most revered political figure in the history of the county. He knows everybody, I mean everybody. I’ve worked as a supermarket checker most of my life. When I worked in Antioch Toralkson used to come into my store, he knew all the names of the checkers. He used to talk to the checkers, ask about our lives. Toralkson is a fighter for worker people like no other. The fact that Desaulnier has Toralkson’s endorsement is all you need to know.

  • Elwood

    “Torlakson is the most revered political figure in the history of the county.”

    What have you been smoking, Rich? Is there any left? Can I have some?

  • Elwood

    I was thinking about Garamendi until I read about his support of the “Employee Free Choice Act”

    Here is how the EFCA would work in practice: Some goon hands you a card and says “Sign this card or I’ll break your head.”

    Take it from one who knows.

  • G.Michael Paine

    As a union member you voted for that “goon”. So, vote him out.

  • MEP

    Saw Garamendi speak at the Dem Convention – he misspoke when he said he was in Fremont when he was actually in Fairfield! He doesn’t know Solano or Contra Costa! He should run for the 3rd, where he lives and take out Dan Lungren!

  • Elwood

    G.Michael Paine could you please repost in English? I don’t understand whatever language you’re using. I am not a union member, nor are the people who are given the option (excuse me, “free choice” of signing the card or having their head busted.