Video: Dems, unions to divorce?

posted at 2:41 pm on June 19, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Color me skeptical on this argument — to a point. Former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Al Checchi tells Fox News today that we can expect to see the Democratic Party and Big Labor going their separate ways after the recall election in Wisconsin — and perhaps especially the two city-wide pension-reform referendums in Checchi’s California, two states long ruled by union power. Have Democrats finally realized that their reliance on union money, in particular government-worker union money, puts them on the wrong side of public sentiment about government costs and power? Maybe:


There are a couple of data points to support Checchi’s argument, the elections themselves primarily. When Wisconsin and San Jose, California rally to defy public-employee unions and support cuts in government costs, it’s difficult to determine where exactly a marriage with Big Labor will actually help get Democrats elected. On the union side, having Barack Obama go AWOL in their biggest fight in years doesn’t exactly give them any reason to spend resources electing Democrats at all. That explains the AFL-CIO decision reported last week to which Checchi refers:

The AFL-CIO has told Washington Whispers it will redeploy funds away from political candidates smack dab in the middle of election season, the latest sign that the largest federation of unions in the country could be becoming increasingly disillusioned with President Obama. …

“We wanted to start investing our funds in our own infrastructure and advocacy,” AFL-CIO spokesman Josh Goldstein told Whispers. “There will be less contributions to candidates,” including President Obama.

While there were “a lot of different opinions” about whether Obama should have gone to Wisconsin, according to Goldstein, “this is not a slight at the president.”

Perhaps that’s true — but can anyone imagine the AFL-CIO making these changes if Obama had campaigned on their behalf? They would have waited until after the end of this campaign, especially given the short period of time left this year before the national election. On the other hand, unless Big Labor gets in line with public sentiment and stops backing hard-progressive policies like ObamaCare, where else do they go? And where else do Democrats go to raise the kind of money they need? It’s going to be mighty difficult for unions and Democrats to quit each other.

I’ll still put this in the I’ll-believe-it-when-I-see-it category, especially since Checchi isn’t exactly a household-name expert on either unions or Democrats. If it’s on the level, though, Democrats are about to have a very bad year.


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It’s a trap !

Mr. Arrogant on June 19, 2012 at 2:44 PM

“We wanted to start investing our funds in our own infrastructure and advocacy,” AFL-CIO spokesman Josh Goldstein told Whispers. “

Translation: new in-ground pool and hookers

Laura in Maryland on June 19, 2012 at 2:46 PM

Never happen. You can’t fight Mother Nature.

a capella on June 19, 2012 at 2:47 PM

The union Commies are about as likely to abandon supporting The Commie, as Lassie was likely to abandon protecting little Timmy.

Sidebar: I apologize to both Lassie and little Timmy, for using them in this comparison to Commie dirt.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 19, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Money and blackmail works on either party.

faraway on June 19, 2012 at 2:49 PM

On the union side, having Barack Obama go AWOL in their biggest fight in years doesn’t exactly give them any reason to spend resources electing Democrats at all. That explains the AFL-CIO decision reported last week to which Checchi refers:

Maybe not all the unions will bail on Obama. The UAW got a sweetheart deal from Obama during the Government Motors buyout.

But maybe the AFL-CIO is seeing declining membership, and maybe they will spend members’ dues on what they should be doing–negotiating contracts for union members…

Steve Z on June 19, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Who gets custody of Andrew Stern?

teke184 on June 19, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Barack Obama and Bill Ayers were never great friends of unions in Chicago. Many of their efforts were attempts to take away union power in the schools.

J_Crater on June 19, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Horse hockey!

ooonaughtykitty on June 19, 2012 at 2:53 PM

The Democrats are calling the union’s bluff. The unions have to pull the money to show who’s really in charge. The “Democrats” will come back with their tails between their legs and head on the ground.

pedestrian on June 19, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Divorce….who gets the vacation cottage in the Caribbean?

think it was the afl-cio that said last week they were behind barry’s EO…..but if the truth be known, I would bet NOT.

at least 800K more workers and those will work for less than the union……this might be the summer of discontent between the unions and dims.

:fingerscrossed:

DiabloAzure on June 19, 2012 at 2:53 PM

The minute Unions join the GOP, even if it is joined by an exodus of big business from the GOP, is the day we see GOP dominance for a generation. The combined coalition would be overwhelming to the Democratic opposition. I’m not saying the GOP has to cater to the needs of the Union bosses, but if it can get a hold of the rank and file union voters, its possible. It won’t happen as long as we nominate people like Romney, but Santorum, Palin, or even Christie could do a good job of bringing these voters into the coalition.

vegconservative on June 19, 2012 at 2:54 PM

The donks will never willingly get off the public employee union donation teat. NEVER. That is why we have to end PUEs and the sooner the better.

jukin3 on June 19, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Never happen. You can’t fight Mother Nature.

Right. They may be disenchanted now, but there’s still time to reconcile and make happy. Where are they going to go anyhow? Unless the unions can miraculously create a national party to rival the Dems in a fantastically short period of time, cause they ain’t going to the GOP, they stay married to the dems.

hawkeye54 on June 19, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Barack Obama and Bill Ayers were never great friends of unions in Chicago. Many of their efforts were attempts to take away union power in the schools.

J_Crater on June 19, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Unions have no long term role in the worker’s paradise that 0 envisions.

pedestrian on June 19, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Not buying this one bit…

OmahaConservative on June 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

When you see what they do with Illegals, I think many of the rank and file are already peeling off.

stldave on June 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Will. Never. Happen.

Both sides don’t have anywhere else to turn.

ElectricPhase on June 19, 2012 at 2:59 PM

The dems and the unions play this little dance all the time but once the final call comes at closing time they always go home together and get in bed.

tommyboy on June 19, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Not buying it at all.

DanMan on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Obama gave them GM. What more do they want?

The Rogue Tomato on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Hmmm. Did I just see a pig flying by my window?

Nope, didn’t think so.

ICanSeeNovFromMyHouse on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

When you see what they do with Illegals, I think many of the rank and file are already peeling off.

stldave on June 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

I think the rank-and-file have been peeling off for a long time.

Crap like Wisconsin, where the bigwigs went to war over the ability to extort the state for insurance rather than jobs, didn’t help things much.

I’m sure they were keeping an eye on the layoffs within the districts which signed union deals before Walker’s law vs. the ones which were subject to the changes.

teke184 on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Before the demonRats and the union thugs divorce, is there any chance they will commit suicide while lying in bed together one last time?

Good riddance–separately or together.

MisterElephant on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

“You get what you pay for”

“Blaming Bush for the recession is patently ridiculous”

Sounds like 0 has a real debate opponent if he decides to zip up his pants and stop debating John F’ing Kerry.

pedestrian on June 19, 2012 at 3:02 PM

Between blocking all those union jobs from the Keystone pipeline, killing coal miner union jobs, and legitimizing all those low-wage, non-union folk last Friday, I bet the unions are not real happy with 0. Except for the government unions, anyway, they still love him.

iurockhead on June 19, 2012 at 3:04 PM

In other words…

… the accountant finally tallied up the bill for the last go around and reminded the union bosses that he warned them that going all in was a bad idea.

Seven Percent Solution on June 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

The unions hitched their wagon to the democrat party, but if that nag don’t pull no more, they can go their own way, and loot the taxpayers without the middleman.

In other words, a union 3rd party.

Rebar on June 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Wink, wink.

Pork-Chop on June 19, 2012 at 3:06 PM

stldave on June 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Already the Houston Comical is happily reporting the actual number of impacted illegals is 1.4 million. And who is going to be hurt the most? Young blacks that are way over represented in umemployment stats. And those that recently went through or are now will into the legal pipeline must be fuming as well.

If unions want to tie themselves to illegals (which other than SEIU I doubt) they will hasten their demise.

DanMan on June 19, 2012 at 3:06 PM

The unions hitched their wagon to the democrat party, but if that nag don’t pull no more, they can go their own way, and loot the taxpayers without the middleman.

In other words, a union 3rd party.

Rebar on June 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

CPUSA already exists.

Gingotts on June 19, 2012 at 3:08 PM

Calm down folks. They will divorce private unions. They can no more divorce PEUs than one can divorce one’s own private junk.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 3:08 PM

meh, using Kerry as a debate opponent…we’re going to test the theory that states jello sharpens silly putty I guess

DanMan on June 19, 2012 at 3:09 PM

They can no more divorce PEUs than one can divorce one’s own private junk.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 3:08 PM

Except I think Obama actually did divorce his private junk, as did Boehner.

The Rogue Tomato on June 19, 2012 at 3:10 PM

Before the demonRats and the union thugs divorce, is there any chance they will commit suicide while lying in bed together one last time?

One can hope for the political suicide for them both, but divorce is not really an option for union leadership, as it has no where else to turn.

hawkeye54 on June 19, 2012 at 3:10 PM

Where else will the unions go but to the Democrat party? This is a ploy, a tourniquet, if you will, to stanch the hemorrhage of members ahead of other states developing laws such as Wisconsin has done. If the unions develop some rhetorical distance from Dems, then members who are free to leave unions may be less inclined to do so based upon the stench of Democrat hands in the unions actions.

my 2 cent.

ted c on June 19, 2012 at 3:12 PM

OT : mitt to addres the naacp…..anything can happen

cmsinaz on June 19, 2012 at 3:12 PM

Yeah, right.

Philly on June 19, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Except I think Obama actually did divorce his private junk, as did Boehner.

The Rogue Tomato on June 19, 2012 at 3:10 PM

In Obama’s case, it wasn’t a divorce. It was a violent separation. Remember, in the beginning of the term, plenty of pictures were circulating with Obama ogling some young derrieres? Not anymore. Mooch took care of it.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Already the Houston Comical is happily reporting the actual number of impacted illegals is 1.4 million.

And since no way of verifying will be employed by the govenment, nor the borders sealed, so we can expect that number to be even higher, allowing for an endless supply of illegals seeking Obama’s writ of absolution and membership in the democrat party.

hawkeye54 on June 19, 2012 at 3:15 PM

In other words, a union 3rd party.

Rebar on June 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

That is an interesting thought. Don’t we already have a Socialist and Communist party, but which one would they meld with?

Fallon on June 19, 2012 at 3:17 PM

When you see what they do with Illegals, I think many of the rank and file are already peeling off.

stldave on June 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

The unions (Public Employee Unions excepted) would be dumping the Dems in droves, if they actually listened to their rank-and-file.

Union leadership, however, does not give a flying Fluke about what the rank-and-file thinks.

I say this as a former union member, when I sailed as a Merchant Mariner for a short time after coming off of Active Duty. (Marine Engineers Benevolent Association – District 2.) (Please don’t hate me because I joined a union. It was a closed shop, and if I wanted a job I had to join.)

SubmarineDoc on June 19, 2012 at 3:18 PM

CPUSA already exists.

Yeah, and it should sue the dems for stealing its platform and talking points.

hawkeye54 on June 19, 2012 at 3:19 PM

The industrial union are at odds with the government employee unions. They see Obama’s stimulus as favoring government workers over private sector union members as one example.

In Wisconsin, Democrats in the legislature torpedoed a bill that would have allowed mining projects in the state and provide thousands of union jobs. Democrats thought it would make Walker “look good” if the bill passed so it was scuttled. The industrial union were livid and held that up as another example of Democrats favoring public unions over private unions. They vowed that they would not be Obama’s ATM anymore. And so, here we are.

crosspatch on June 19, 2012 at 3:20 PM

I’m sure they can send Obama a tweet for support.

WhatNot on June 19, 2012 at 3:21 PM

I don’t know about splitting the sheets but they both might remember which side their bread is buttered, or smeared, on.

The fact remains that if unions promoted the GOP the same way they’ve corruptly dealt with Dems, the Dems would do what ever they had to, to get union funding cut off.

The difference is if Republican voters knew the people they voted for were screwing them over to grease union wheels enough hell would be raised to get them all thrown out of office.

Dem voters? They like that the people they put in office are a bunch of hosers.

Just don’t get caught, ala Weiner.

Speakup on June 19, 2012 at 3:21 PM

democrats must have union support to survive (i think)
unions must have democrat support to survive (i think)

I don’t see this divorce happening, but….it’s funny to consider that they have irreconcilable differences and should do it “for the sake of the kids” or something./

ted c on June 19, 2012 at 3:22 PM

Temper tantrum.

Bmore on June 19, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Who gets custody of the MSM then?

NoDonkey on June 19, 2012 at 3:25 PM

Who gets custody of the MSM then?

Whoever bids highest at close of auction on ebay.

hawkeye54 on June 19, 2012 at 3:37 PM

Nothing but talk.

Bob's Kid on June 19, 2012 at 3:38 PM

OT : mitt to addres the naacp…..anything can happen

cmsinaz on June 19, 2012 at 3:12 PM

Heckle city?

Del Dolemonte on June 19, 2012 at 3:38 PM

I’m sure they can send Obama a tweet for support.

WhatNot on June 19, 2012 at 3:21 PM

Instant Classic from 2011′s Hot Gas Twit of the Year:

Thanks for the link to Obama’s twitter page, Ed! Looking forward to following him.

crr6 on June 18, 2011 at 1:34 PM

Del Dolemonte on June 19, 2012 at 3:40 PM

The industrial unions are going to align with the party that promises private sector growth. The government employee unions are going to align with the party promising growth of government.

We are now at a point in our economic situation where government consumes an increasing portion of our GDP and we can not have both.

crosspatch on June 19, 2012 at 3:41 PM

Could be del. Could be

cmsinaz on June 19, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Obama had promised, you may remember, that wherever collective bargaining was threatened, he would be there to walk the picket lines with them. Then they have the picket lines, and guess who had a urgent golf date or thirty instead?

If 20% of the Democrats he’s screwed over vote against him or just don’t vote, he loses in a landslide. And his legacy will be “the guy who made Carter look decent.”

Adjoran on June 19, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Unions (including PEUs) existence is being threatened it is natural for them to cozy up to Republicans in exchange for survival. Republicans have an opportunity to drive a wedge between the interest groups like unions for whom pocketbook issues predominate and the single social issue groups like Greens, LBGTs, Blacks and their wealthy supporters and sympathizers.

oznerola on June 19, 2012 at 3:53 PM

…never happen…if they didn’t have each other to bend over…what would they have?

KOOLAID2 on June 19, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Total BS…

PatriotRider on June 19, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Unions are always going to back one politician over another. And that will always be the Democratic candidate.

As long as there is money to be had, they will always be together.

ButterflyDragon on June 19, 2012 at 4:08 PM

As Mom used to say, “I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts…’

The public sentiment against unions was duly noted by the socialists controlling the DNC and thus we have the charade of separation, but in reality they will stay together like bagels and lox.

Money will continue to flow freely from the “workers of the world” leaders as usual. The question is how many of the rank and file see the destruction of their nation by their own and will fight the silent fight in the polling booths of America?

Don L on June 19, 2012 at 4:09 PM

Hmmm… is that the smell of war, between Public and Private Sector Unions I smell wafting towards me?

Gravel Gertie on June 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

On one hand, I can completely agree with your skepticism, AP.

On the other hand, I’m bitterly disappointed you didn’t think to include this in the post.

thirteen28 on June 19, 2012 at 4:29 PM

So do we expect to see a bad movie out of this when they patch up their relationships? I can see one of the lines already as the Unions say to the Democrats: “I can’t quit you!”

Turtle317 on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Obama gave them GM. What more do they want?

The Rogue Tomato on June 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

And Chrysler……

itsspideyman on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Gravel has it. The unions that depend on private sector growth (or their continued existence in the rust belt) have to be tired of public sector unions as well. This is was Ed Shultz missed in his post Wisconsin rant. Unions don’t all have the same interests.

MajorKong on June 19, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Well unions can run their own in-house candidates. Heck. Talk about a “sock puppet”!

GarandFan on June 19, 2012 at 5:05 PM

What….no ‘Checchi and Chong’ jokes?

percysunshine on June 19, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Verizon/CWA has been w/o a contract since Aug of ’11. They walked the picket line for 13 days. Union members get $200/week after they have been out 2 weeks. On the 13th day, the CWA announced they would work under the old contract while hanging w/hookers, golfing and negotiating(?) So the membership got stiffed on $400 each. The CWA claimed the strike fund was tapped. But they have plenty of cash in the “buy a Donk and blow” fund. This whole ordeal left a very bad taste on my fellow members mouth. They may wear the enforced button on the shirt, but many outside the metro areas a Red to the Bone!

hutch1200 on June 19, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Hmmm… is that the smell of war, between Public and Private Sector Unions I smell wafting towards me?

Gravel Gertie on June 19, 2012

Agreed. As a union telecom member, I’m always putting in new lines at public schools. Of course that is my money flushed, so the teachers have free long distance. Not so at private/charter/Parochial. I am always amazed that while I’m freezing my butt off on an icy pole, some 9 month wonder is pondering striking over a $5 co-pay. I’m trying to hang on to my $15-$25 copay.
And the car of choice? Easy 50% BMW 325ix (AWD)…and they get the day off when it flurries! Brilliant!
Don’t believe me, do a drive by next fall.

hutch1200 on June 19, 2012 at 5:19 PM

The minute Unions join the GOP, even if it is joined by an exodus of big business from the GOP, is the day we see GOP dominance for a generation.

Unions are socialist fronts. If the GOP gets into bed with unions, and big business leaves, the GOP becomes the Donkey party. Maybe the Libertarians will become the second major party then.

tdarrington on June 19, 2012 at 5:55 PM

Well, Democrats – Unions = Less Than 50% Even Under Optimum Conditions and Turnout.

But just because a proposition is an electoral loser, especially at the Presidential level, doesn’t mean the Democrats won’t go that route. Aside from being dealt a couple of political straight flushes, and one superb politico who had a massive third party crutch and couldn’t sniff 50% of the vote, losing on principle has been a fixture of Democratic presidential campaigns for forty years.

They’ll whip themselves into a frenzy cogitating on how college grads and pandering identity to minorities are the gateway to the future. Eventually, around Halloween, it will occur to them that the election is about to take place in the present.

HitNRun on June 19, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Somehow I think Chechy isn’t long with the Democrat party. He’s talking about the unspeakable, what the Dems would never admit to in public, but fret about in private. He’s broken the evil trust, and the only direction for him now is out.

paul1149 on June 19, 2012 at 6:58 PM