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Union official's words capture spirit of holiday

September 4, 2009 - Mike Maneval

An American Prospect article by Tim Fernholz timed to coincide with the Labor Day holiday weekend assesses organized labor's priorities for the coming fall and their views of the first eighth of Obama's first term.

Fernholz says organized labor's two top legislative priorities are health care reform and the Employee Free Choice Act, neither of which appears likely to pass without considerable concessions. Reports that one such concession on health care - abandoning of the public option - may still come to pass have been extensive during the past few weeks.

Moderate "Blue Dog" Democrats are said to be part of the drive to kill the public option, leading AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Richard Trumka to take them on directly, with words appropriate as a holiday whose roots are often forgotten or, truthfully, neglected - that Americans had to shed blood and even their lives for their hard work to have value in the eyes of the economic establishment of the era - looms just ahead.

"You may have forgotten what the labor movement did to get you elected, but, by God, we never will."


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