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What Does AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka Want to Hear in the State of the Union Address?

What Does AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka Want to Hear in the State of the Union Address?

In tomorrow night’s State of the Union address, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka wants to hear President Barack Obama outline a “serious plan” to raise the minimum wage and create good jobs through education and infrastructure investments; a blueprint to end economic inequality; and an end to separating immigrant families from each other through deportation.

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Obama: Economy Must Focus on Middle Class

Obama: Economy Must Focus on Middle Class

With the debate in Washington set to return to the budget and the economy after the August congressional recess, President Obama today said, “The stakes for our middle class could not be higher.” In the first of several speeches set for coming weeks on the economy, Obama told the audience at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill., that because of a Republican-led "endless parade of distractions, political posturing and phony scandals, Washington has taken its eye off the ball."

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Trumka Reacts to the 2013 State of the Union

Trumka Reacts to the 2013 State of the Union

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka released the following statement in response to President Obama's 2013 State of the Union address:

"Tonight President Obama sent a clear message to the world that he will stand and fight for working America’s values and priorities. And with the foundation he laid, working families will fight by his side to build an economy that works for all."

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State of the Union 2013: Shared Priorities for President Obama and Working People

Photo courtesy of by Pete Souza (Executive Office of the President of the United States)

On Tuesday, President Obama will give the first State of the Union Address of his second term in office and working families are happy to hear the focus will be jobs and the economy. This year’s address comes after an election in which America’s families made a clear choice between very different visions for the country.

Across the country, working people will be watching and listening with great interest for the president to maintain the values and priorities on which they elected him, including a commitment to creating middle-class jobs, asking the wealthiest 2% to pay their fair share and protecting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid from benefit cuts.

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Obama to Push for Path to Citizenship in Immigration Reform

Photo courtesy of the United We Dream Facebook page.

President Obama intends to push quickly to fix America's broken immigration system, according to The New York Times, including a path to citizenship—the core of the AFL-CIO's immigration reform agenda.

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Election Protection Alert: Phony Email Alerts and T-Shirt Bans

Election Protection Alert: Phony Email Alerts and T-Shirt Bans

The website The Root and AFL-CIO and SEIU staff members in Pennsylvania report an email and Facebook posting seemingly aimed at African American voters warning them not to vote an automatic “straight Democratic” ticket because it supposedly would not include President Obama.

Meanwhile, a Pennsylvania voter was told he would not be allowed to vote unless he removed a shirt with President Obama’s name on it. The AFL-CIO Voter Protection rapid response team reports both issues have been resolved.

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Join Us: AFL-CIO Is Live-Blogging Election Day

After you vote Nov. 6 (if you haven't voted already), join us on the AFL-CIO Now blog for live coverage and an interactive chat on Election Day, starting at 9 a.m. ET. We'll be providing updates from the states, info on voter protection and the inside scoop on what we're hearing from America's workers and union members. Bookmark or sign up for an email reminder below. 

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Obama Lays Out His Vision for a Second Term: What's Your Vision?

In an article on, President Obama made his closing argument for the 2012 election by laying out his vision for the country in his second term.

What is your vision for the future of the country? Log in and comment below. 

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Six Points You Need to Remember as We Head to Election Day

Labor 2012 gets out the vote.

AFL-CIO Political Director Michael Podhorzer sends us this. 

As we head into the final stretch of the election season, these are six overarching points to keep in mind. 

1. Working-class rejection of Bush-Romney-Ryan economics is the defining issue of this year.

A year ago, all the talk was that President Obama could never win with high unemployment. And even more to the point, the early conventional wisdom went further, writing off working-class voters, asserting that the only path available to Obama was upscale voters in states like North Carolina. Yet what we see is that middle-class families are not voting automatically on the basis of the current economic statistics. They are comparing alternative approaches—and rejecting the reverse Robin Hood, union-busting, extreme economic positions of the right.

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Differing Economic Visions Drive Working-Class Voters to Obama

Photo courtesy of the Colorado AFL-CIO Facebook page.

The union movement’s election outreach and mobilization—which ends with a massive “Final Four” GOTV drive—has made “the working class rejection of the Bush-Romney-Ryan economic agenda the defining issue of this election,” says AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

Overwhelmingly core economic issues, like protecting Medicare, ending tax cuts for the rich, creating good jobs and rejecting the failed economic policies of the past, are driving working-class voters to Barack Obama and away from Republican economics and wedge issues—as long as people have the information on both candidates’ real records.

Read more about working families' "Final Four" GOTV push

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