Trump and Biden Grapple for Union Support

( – As the upcoming presidential election draws nearer, both the current President Biden and former President Trump have attempted to secure the support of American unions. While the union movement is a traditionally leftwing one, this has not stopped Donald Trump from meeting with the leading members of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters in an effort to sway their vote.

The union represents 1.3 million members, including airline pilots, dockworkers, and truck drivers. He appeared to come away from a roundtable meeting with the union’s president, executive board, and some members on January 31st with hopes of a possible endorsement, telling reporters that “stranger things have happened”.

The teamster union President Sean O’Brien also spoke positively of the meeting, describing it as “pleasant” but adding that it could take several months for any endorsement to be decided upon. O’Brien also said that Biden had done “good work” in the past for union members but was clear that past success does not guarantee future success, or indeed, future endorsements. Instead, he said that he and the union would be looking at what they needed in the future before deciding which candidate to support.

Trump has spoken confidently about his chances of success amongst the rank-and-file members of the union, even if he does not secure an official endorsement, and certainly, his popularity with blue-collar workers has only increased since he was elected president in 2016. Trump and his team are keen to bolster this popularity, and just two hours before the union meeting released a set of pledges they say will improve life for workers in the U.S., including introducing tariffs on Chinese products and closing the border with Mexico.

Biden is similarly keen to maintain the historic pro-Democrat support amongst the unions, declaring himself to be the most “pro-union” president, and saying that he was “honored” to have secured the endorsement of the Michigan-based United Auto Workers Union. The official support pledged by the 400,000-strong union comes after some hesitation, with members expressing concern over some of Biden’s policies, including aiming to have half of all vehicles produced in the U.S. be electric vehicles by 2030.

Copyright 2024,