Unions focus on grassroots organizing, not helping the Democratic National Convention make ends meet

by Laura Clawson

The Democratic National Convention may be falling short of fundraising needs, but a number of unions are making it clear that they won’t be helping fill the gap. For some unions, refusing to give in 2012, let alone at the levels they did in 2008, is in response to the DNC’s location in anti-union North Carolina. For more, though, it represents a desire to shift resources away from Democratic Party support and into grassroots organizing, including promoting a “Second Bill of Rights” and a rally in Philadelphiaon August 11.

Describing the AFL-CIO’s decisions about the DNC, Richard Trumka wrote in a memo that:

“This year, we will not be making major monetary contributions to the convention or the host committee for events or activities around the convention, Trumka wrote. “We won’t be buying skyboxes, hosting events other than the labor-delegates meeting, or bringing a big staff contingent to the convention.”An AFL-CIO official said that the decision was motivated solely by the organization’s strategy of focusing on grassroots efforts this election cycle, and the outcome would have been the same regardless of where the convention was held.

Continue reading

Democrats look to unions for convention fundraising; unions unwilling

by Laura Clawson

Struggling to raise enough money for the Democratic National Convention after rejecting contributions from lobbyists and corporations and limiting individual donors to $100,000 contributions, the Democratic party is looking to unionsto close the funding gap. There’s a big problem with that expectation, though: From the moment the DNC’s location in Charlotte, North Carolina was announced, unions have made clear their displeasure at the Democratic party holding its biggest event in a state with anti-union laws and the lowest percentage of unionized workers in the country.

Continue reading