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Mitt, How Many's 'Too Many' Public Employees If Your House Catches Fire?

Temo Fuentes is one of the public employees Mitt Romney says we have "too many" of and that “it’s time for us to cut back." Fuentes repairs the fire trucks that would be on the scene immediately if Romney’s exclusive $12 million oceanfront La Jolla, Calif., mansion—or any other in the posh neighborhood—caught fire.

In this third AFSCME video spotlighting the public service workers and the 47% Romney says he doesn’t care about, Fuentes—whose mother once cleaned houses in Romney’s upscale enclave—worries about how he will provide for his family if his job disappears.

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In Case You Missed It: Watch 'What's At Stake for Latinos This Election'

At more than 15% of the American population, Latinos are being courted by candidates from the presidential race down to state and local races, which is why yesterday the AFL-CIO teamed up with the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) and Univision as part of Latino Heritage Month to host a panel discussing what’s at stake in this election for Latino voters.

In case you missed the live webcast yesterday, watch the panel in the post or here:

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Let's Talk: Join the AFL-CIO for a Live Discussion During the 2012 Presidential Debate

Join us for a live blog discussion Wed., Oct. 3 from 9 p.m.-10:30 p.m. EDT.

This election has mostly been about the candidates talking at you, so wouldn't you like an opportunity to talk back? Join AFL-CIO economic policy experts during the presidential debate Wednesday evening from 9 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. EDT on the AFL-CIO NOW blog for an interactive discussion. 

While President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney debate, our policy team will provide analysis and commentary on important things to look for. You also can submit your own questions and comments directly into the live blog. Please remember, all comments will be moderated before they're posted to the live blog, so please refrain from profanity, personal attacks and commentary that detract from the discussion. 

Enter your email address below so you can get a reminder to check in with us Wednesday night. We hope to see you there!

Text DEBATE to AFLCIO (235246) to join our text action team. (Standard messaging and data rates may apply.)


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The Corporate Class War’s Smoking Gun

Hugh J. Campbell of the United Steelworkers (USW) sends us "The Corporate Class War’s Smoking Gun." 

The Powell Memo: A Call-to-Arms for Corporations, the companion article to Moyers & Company’s The One Percent Court, tells how the response to business getting its clock cleaned was the mobilization for political combat. Four decades later, the middle class has had its clock cleaned as a result of the undeclared class war that began in 1971.

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Watch: Election 2012 and What's at Stake for Latinos

Watch the video by clicking on the image below or the title of the post:

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No ‘Poll Tax’ This Year in Pennsylvania


I’ll never forget my up-close encounter with vote suppression—and it’s the reason I’m so pleased today that a judge in Pennsylvania ordered elections officials there not to enforce a new voter ID law. That means Pennsylvanians who can’t show a photo ID when they go to the polls can still vote a regular—not a provisional—ballot.

My encounter with vote suppression was years ago, when I was a little girl and wanted a new pair of shoes. You can’t get new shoes now, my mother told me, because she had to save the money to pay her poll tax. That’s how important the right to vote was to my mother—she knew it was a sacred right that people had fought and died for and she was not about to treat it as anything less.

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SPEEA Members Reject Boeing Pact in Landslide Vote

SPEEA members count ballots in Boeing contract vote. SPEEA photo

Engineers and technical workers at the Boeing Co. overwhelmingly rejected the company’s contract in a mail ballot ratification vote announced last night. The workers are members of Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA)/IFPTE Local 2001.

Boeing had claimed the union’s negotiating team did not represent the workers’ desires, says SPEEA Executive Director Ray Goforth. But on recommendation of the committee, the workers rejected the contract 15,092 to 608. Says Goforth:

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César Chávez’s Home Designated National Monument

UFW Photo

President Obama yesterday designated the home and burial site of the legendary United Farm Workers (UFW) leader, César Chávez, a national monument. Known as La Paz, short for Nuestra Senora Reina de la Paz, or Our Leady Queen of Peace, the site is in Kenne, Calif. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka says the designation is a:

fitting tribute for a man whose campaign for civil rights and respect for workers struggling in the shadows broke new ground and left an indelible mark on the pages of American history.

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Bahrain's Denial of Visas to Rights Activists Underscores Contempt for Human and Worker Rights

This is an excerpt from The Huffington Post article, "Bahrain's Denial of Visas to Rights Activists Underscores Contempt for Human and Worker Rights," by Cathy Feingold, director of AFL-CIO's International Department. 

What is the best way for the United States to stand against violent repression, the quashing of dissent, show trials, torture and other egregious violations of human and civil rights?

In the case of Bahrain, apparently, it is to include the country in a new U.S. trade and investment plan and offer mostly silence as the regime crushes its opposition, invests heavily in a public relations campaign and closes off the country to human rights and social justice activists.

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Judge Issues Partial Injunction Against Pa. Voter Suppression Law for Nov. 6 Election

A Pennsylvania state judge this morning issued a partial injunction of the state's voter ID law. Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson ruled that voters will still be asked to present a valid ID, and if they don't have one, they'll be asked to present one next time but will be able to vote in the Nov. 6 election.

Voters will not be required to return within six days to show a valid identification card, as was required by the law passed earlier this year. 

We’ll bring you more details later. This ruling only applies to the Nov. 6 election. 

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