[Marxism] Alex Chis on the Teamster's convention

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Jul 18 08:15:05 MDT 2011


(Alex is a former member of the American SWP, as is Claudette 
Begin who was a delegate to the convention.)

Hi all,

Here are some pix of the Teamsters convention in Las Vegas that 
Claudette and I just attended. Claudette was elected as a delegate 
supporting Sandy Pope, who is opposing Hoffa in the election for 
Teamster general president this fall. The conventions are every 
five years, the Teamsters have about 1.4 million members, and 
there were about 2000 delegates. She is a new Teamster, since the 
clerical union at the University of California, CUE, voted to 
affiliate with the Teamsters union.

Some of the pix are clearly technically challenged! What with low 
light, enthusiastic supporters, and a lot of activity not all are 
ideal. But I think they give a feel of the last push for Sandy's 
nomination.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/alexchis/sets/72157627085955071/

The convention was completely controlled by the Hoffa forces, to 
the extent that the Hoffa delegates (all wearing red vests) booed 
down any opposition delegates that managed to get recognized. I 
think there were only 2 all week. One picture shows Claudette 
standing at the mike on the first day after not being recognized 
by Hoffa, who chaired the convention. The only real chance to 
speak was the official nomination of Sandy Pope. Her supporters 
were allowed one person to nominate, Tim Sylvester for
5 minutes, and one person to second the
nomination, for two minutes. Claudette was chosen to second the 
nomination, and did a great job. You can see her in two pix on the 
big screen.

Candidates had to get 5% of the delegate vote at the convention to 
secure a place on the ballot for the general election this fall. 
Most of the pictures show us with signs on the evening of that 
vote, encouraging delegates to vote for Sandy.

Sandy did get enough votes, and will be on the ballot with Hoffa 
and one other person this fall. Sandy was allowed to make an 
acceptance speech on the final day of the convention, which was 
very good, although all the Hoffa delegates walked out before she 
spoke!

For those more interested, Sandy Pope's official website is

http://sandypope2011.org/

and you can hear her acceptance speech there.


You can see a video of Claudette at

http://sandypope2011.org/story/fire-back-war-workers

It's also on YouTube at

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1i-h08whww


The Teamsters for a Democratic Union website is here

http://www.tdu.org/


Obviously a win for Sandy Pope this fall would be a major plus for 
all our fight backs. Please visit both the Sandy Pope website and 
the TDU website to find out how you can help in the effort. If you 
are now a Teamster or have Teamster friends that is especially 
important, but all can help. Putting up Sandy Pope signs near 
major Teamster sites, such as UPS, is something anyone can do. 
Materials can be ordered from the Sandy Pope and TDU websites. The 
legal team will also need help.
I am sure non-Teamsters can donate financially in that way.

Tell your friends. This is an important fight, and there is a 
chance to win.

Fell free to forward this email.


Enjoy!

alex





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