July 31, 2008 Concord, NH “Barack Obama stands behind working men and women, so New Hampshire’s building and construction workers are enthusiastically standing behind him,” said NH State Building and Construction Trades Council President Edward J. Foley in announcing the Council’s endorsement of Barack Obama for President.
The State Building Trades Council, comprised of 19 Local Construction Unions encompassing all construction crafts, represents over 5,000NH members. Each Local Union had a voice in determining the Council’s presidential endorsement, and the choice of Obama was unanimous.
“Barack Obama understands the needs of local communities and working families,” Foley said at a large Council gathering in Concord. “He stood on the front lines in organizing in the community when he first came to Chicago, and he still understands what it means to workers to have the right to organize and bargain collectively in order to obtain decent wages and working conditions and economic security for our families.”
Foley added, “Barack Obama has personally made clear to us that working people will have a voice and a seat at the table when the Obama administration begins in January, 2009 and when we finally get on with the job of turning around the disastrous economic policies of George W. Bush.”
Representatives of multiple unions commented that while they, and their members, respect John McCain for his military service to the country and his suffering and sacrifice during the Vietnam War, it is McCain’s policies of today that matter to rank and file construction workers when they go to the polls in November. And they see that John McCain’s actions and policy positions show he clearly opposes initiatives that are designed to protect the middle class and improve the well-being of working people. So, there was really no choice, numerous building trades workers noted, because only one candidate truly stands on the side of the working class.
“Our members and their families, friends, and neighbors are scared about where the economy is headed,” said Foley, “and they want to have hope for the future again – and hope for a better life for their children and grandchildren. We can’t afford what will amount to a third Bush term. With Barack Obama, we have a sense of hope.”