Copyright 2014. Sheet Metal Workers Local Union 19. All rights reserved.
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In the last several years, Local 19 has taken great strides to improve our political program and this election cycle's results are proof that these improvements are working. November 7th more friends of Labor won on the local and state level in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey in a very long time. Organized Labor as a whole has shaken up our regional politics with Local 19 at the head of the pack.
This past general election day sheet metal workers were working out of five main locations throughout the region. This important day of service is a valuable tool that we all use to ensure our friends who will fight for us gain or retain elected office and those that work against the middle class are defeated. Nearly every race our union was involved in this year was a winner, from the Governor's race in New Jersey to, nearly every row office in Bucks County, down to the School Board in Upper Darby Delaware County. All levels from the bottom to the top!
Over the last year our union officials have been vetting candidates, building bridges with campaigns and reaching out to incumbents to further our members' and their families' interests. But our true strength still lies in our membership. For months Local 19 apprentices, journeypersons, and officials have been volunteering their time on Saturdays and Sundays to help push our friends through the finish line. We are finding great success with these strategies.
Some of the most notable victories this past general election day starting in New Jersey would be Phil Murphy winning the Governor's Office, Senator Steve Sweeney's triumphant victory over a tough challenger in the 3rd Legislative District. Both of these races, along with numerous local offices were heavily focused on by Local 19.
Assistant Business Manager, Bryan Bush remarked: "With all of the hard work from our apprentices out of Central PA canvasing the streets in Phillipsburg, NJ and the apprentices from Philadelphia, New Jersey and Delaware covering the lower part of the state along with of our union officials, teachers, & training coordinators every weekend for 3 months before election day. Also, the phenomenal showing by all members who came out to help on election day, Local 19 was truly recognized by New Jersey Governor Elect Phil Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney, the 40 Senate Candidates, Incumbent & new, along with Many assemblymen & women.
In Pennsylvania there were many notable victories. When most people thought this was an "off year," where there wasn't a lot going on, Local 19 was very active in PA politics as well. The fact of the matter that people need to realize is that there is no such thing as an off year when it comes to electing people that will advocate for us on all levels of governance. Some of the most notable wins for Local 19 in PA were Maria McLaughlin and Carolyn Nichols for PA Superior Court. Both candidates engaged with our membership at meetings recently and we know they will serve honorably the everyone that lives and works in the Commonwealth.
But as former Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill always said, "all politics is local." Every race is important and any win is possible with the right ground game. That's exactly what happened in the Philadelphia five county area this year in Pennsylvania. Local 19 strategically targeted races in Bucks, Delaware and Chester counties where there were historic victories that turned the tides for working families in our region. Our members canvassed, phone banked, and worked the polls. It was through our members' efforts those victories were possible and they should be extremely proud!
President and Business Manager, Gary Masino said, "This has been one of the most successful election years in quite a long time for Local 19, on both sides of the river. Five years ago we were dead in the water, we didn't have the infrastructure in place to really get out there and make a difference. But now, through the strategic steps our political team has made, with all the hard work from our apprentices and journeypersons, we can help to make a real difference in our members and all working families lives within our territory. Masino went on to say, "This year was a record turnout for Local 19 members and we are already seeing the fruits of our labor. The very next day after the election, I received a call from Governor Elect, Phil Murphy and I am proud to announce that Bryan Bush has been named to the Governor Elect's transition team for Labor. And a few days later NJ Senate President Steve Sweeney notified me that he was appointing Bryan to the NJ Transportation Board as well. This is a huge honor for Bryan and Local 19 and I couldn't be happier! I also must thank all the Local 19 Officials, Educators, and Stewards who continue to put in long hours to give our membership the Union they deserve."
Things are looking up right now, but President Masino needs our membership to be aware that we have tremendous fights coming in 2018 throughout Pennsylvania. Masino remarked, "While we're currently in a good position within PA and NJ, we need to be remember that there's a very important Governor's race coming up in PA this next year. Currently with a mostly hostile anti-labor legislature, Governor Wolf is the last line of defense for working families. If he doesn't get re-elected we are looking at a future with great financial uncertainty and pain for our families. Every one of the candidates who may be Gov. Wolf's opponent next year relish in the opportunity to sign any and all bills that would harm organized labor. We have an enormous amount of work ahead of us and we're going to need all hands on deck for the coming days. Because on top of the governor's race, we have State House and Senate seats up as well and it's imperative to give the Governor a legislature that will work for middle class families who live and work in Pennsylvania."
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Welcome to Local 19’s Political Action page. We have a long history of supplying volunteer labor to political campaigns to give them boots on the ground needed to up their game and to see them through to victory.
We average 10 months of the year, working nights and weekends, to help those who help unions.
If you are interested in joining our political action team,
you can contact Todd Farally, our Political Director, at (215) 952-1999.