From: Charles Hogan President
AFSCME Retirees, Sub-chapter 161
October 2, 2014
This blogsite (Election 2014) contains material given to me at the PEOPLE Political conference held in Peoria as well as additional information handed to Sub-Chapter Presidents at our quarterly meeting in Springfield.
With last year’s legislative assault on our pensions and benefits, we have one option. The resolution adopted by the conference is provided below. On the convention floor in Peoria, I watch one Local President after another rise to endorse Pat Quinn. None of them were Quinn’s friends. Their message was that they would vote for Quinn on the 4th in order to defeat Rauner. On the 5th of November, we go back to fighting Quinn’s and Madigan’s policies.
Please take the time to read the posted material, which we expect to update regularly. It can be a sanity shield. During the next five weeks, you will be targeted with a lot of political messages. Their effect will confuse and discourage undecided voters. The hope is that they will stay home and not vote.
But this isn’t a usual off year election. The budget problems in Springfield, combined with the effects of lawsuits of Harris v Quinn, & Citizen’s United have emboldened our enemies. They want to defeat AFSCME. Money is no object. If they can cripple public employee unions as they did in Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan, we could lose our pensions and benefits.
We have a two part plan:
• A person to person effort to get votes for Pat Quinn.
• Then calls to our legislators explaining what our pensions mean to us. They need to hear from constituents like us now and after the election. We want to make them understand that we won’t disappear after November 4th. We aren’t going to pack up and wait for the 2016 election.
RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE DELEGATES TO THE AFSCME PEOPLE CONFERENCE—SEPTEMBER 13, 2014 WHEREAS: Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner has launched an unrelenting, dishonest and mean-spirited attack on public employees and their unions; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has made clear his deep-seated hostility to workers’ rights, whether in the public or private sector, calling for the establishment of “Right-to-Work” zones in Illinois, which would drastically undermine the economic security of working people; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner is trampling on a long tradition — going back to Abraham Lincoln — of Illinois Republicans who respected working people and honest labor, including support for the right to collective bargaining; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has repeatedly attacked the very existence of unions that represent teachers, sanitation workers, correctional officers, caregivers, firefighters, and other public employees, stating that in his view, “by their nature…they’re immoral”; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner is a hedge fund billionaire who made a good part of his vast wealth from public pension funds, but now argues that public pensions should be completely abolished; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner has a documented record as a cutthroat venture capitalist who operated private care facilities that were found to have caused unnecessary suffering and death to hundreds of their elderly and disabled residents; who bought up companies and shipped their jobs overseas; and who sought to cheat his workers out of the wages and benefits they had earned; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner’s campaign is based on a web of lies and half-truths which mask an agenda that would slash funding for education, shift the tax burden from the wealthy to middle income families, and cut the wages of hundreds of thousands of working people; and WHEREAS:
Bruce Rauner owns nine homes and belongs to a wine club that costs $140,000 annually just to join, yet rails against the modest pay and benefits of public employees; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner says he will cut the pay and benefits of public employees, vowing to force them out on strike to impose his will; and WHEREAS: Bruce Rauner represents a profound threat to the decent standard of living and basic workplace rights that AFSCME members have fought so hard to attain; and WHEREAS: AFSCME Council 31 has pledged to do everything possible to defeat Bruce Rauner; and WHEREAS: Critical to defeating Bruce Rauner is ensuring that as many citizens as possible cast their votes for Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Pat Quinn; and WHEREAS: The serious differences that AFSCME has had with Governor Quinn over the past four years cannot stand as a barrier to taking the necessary actions to defeat Bruce Rauner. THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: That AFSCME Council 31 recommends support for Pat Quinn for governor of the