WHY GET INVOLVED IN THE POLITICAL PROCESS?
The most important work we can do in the IBEW is at the bargaining table, gaining better wages, working conditions, overall terms of employment for our members, and to organize all non-union workers. But again and again, we see how many advances made at the bargaining table can be lost through a single action of Congress or a state legislature. Or, how our efforts to
organize workers become more and more difficult due to weakened labor laws brought about by damaging legislation.
Virtually every day. Congress and state legislatures across the country make decisions that vitally affect us regarding policy issues like, safety. Social Security, job and union security, health, licensing, taxes, pensions, the budget, and our children’s schools. The list is endless.
That is why it is imperative for IBEW members to get involved and stay involved at every level of our Union and our country’s political process. We must not be satisfied until every IBEW member is registered to vote. We must see to it that our members meet and get to know the candidates personally, do volunteer work on the campaigns and vote.
We must help to elect candidates to office whose views and ideals are sympathetic with working men and women in our country, regardless of their political party. The IBEW does support political candidates of both parties and Independents as well. If a candidate has the support of our members and our Local Union supports the political fund, we will send a campaign contribution upon request. We must communicate our views to all elected officials.
And, most of all, we must educate our members on the important political issues and encourage them to register and vote.
Corporate and other PACs opposing the interests of IBEW members poured hundreds of millions of dollars into campaigns in recent election years, outspending Labor PACs by a margin of 11-1.
We have always known we may not be able to match them dollar for dollar, but if we support our political fund to the maximum, combined with educating and motivating our members, we can make labor’s candidates viable contenders, and we can help keep our friends in office.
The principle on which the entire labor movement rests is our strength in numbers. If each of us works and contributes separately, we can only have a scattered effect. But, by working through our political program and with the local, state and national AFL-CIO structures, we can truly make a difference.