Saturday, November 29, 2003

Dean vs. Gephardt, Union vs. Union

The L.A. Times has an interesting article about the conflicts among unions in Iowa resulting from the service sector unions' endorsement of Dean and the manufacturing unions' endorsement of Gephardt.
John Campbell is a blue-collar philosopher who routinely steps off the factory floor at the Firestone tire plant here to marshal fellow foot soldiers in the United Steelworkers Union on causes close to their hearts, minds and wallets.

The 47-year-old high school dropout often joins forces with Judy Lowe — a no-nonsense single mother and an organizer for white-collar government workers — to knock on doors, dial telephones and stage cold-weather rallies to get out the vote for politicians sympathetic to working families.

For years, Iowa's industrial and service unions have generally acted as one clan, one unified political force. But the effort to choose a Democratic candidate to oppose President Bush in the 2004 election has caused fissures in this traditionally ironclad solidarity.