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Biden's Election Victory based on Labor & Black Vote
by Labor's Gains & Lessons
Saturday Nov 7th, 2020 10:04 AM
It is now official; Joe Biden has been elected president, defeating an incumbent president, a difficult task. This occurred in the midst of a pandemic that claimed 239,000 lives in 8 months due to gross negligence on the part of the incumbent president, accompanied by the incumbent’s destruction of the economy so that we now have a Great Depression the same as the 1930s. In addition, while the incumbent president states “science does not know,” we have a massive climate change crisis that mandates ending fossil fuels and nuclear power and nuclear weapons in favor of renewable energy sources and peace.
It is now official; Joe Biden has been elected president, defeating an incumbent president, a difficult task. This occurred in the midst of a pandemic that claimed 239,000 lives in 8 months due to gross negligence on the part of the incumbent president, accompanied by the incumbent’s destruction of the economy so that we now have a Great Depression the same as the 1930s. In addition, while the incumbent president states “science does not know,” we have a massive climate change crisis that mandates ending fossil fuels and nuclear power and nuclear weapons in favor of renewable energy sources and peace.

As numerous articles listed below demonstrate, his victory was based on the labor of the workingclass and the black community to get out the vote in person, door to door, and on the phone, in other words, a grassroots old-fashioned organizing campaign since it is always true that all politics are local. There were other victories and upsets as labor always makes radical changes to move humanity forward.

Let us start with the locomotive of American history, the Black Liberation Movement. See https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/06/black-women-continue-to-be-the-democratic-partys-most-powerful-weapon.html
In a 2019 Vogue profile titled, “Can Stacey Abrams Save American Democracy?” Abrams told the magazine that after her 2018 loss she “sat shiva for 10 days” and then she “started plotting.”

Part of that plotting consisted of her starting a voting rights organization called Fair Fight, which continued and expanded the work of the New Georgia Project she started at the end of 2013 that focused exclusively on increasing voter registration. This time, with Fair Fight, Abrams and her team focused on increasing voter participation, as well as education about elections and voter rights.

As a result of these efforts, it’s estimated that more than 800,000 new people have registered to vote in Georgia since 2018, with Abrams telling NPR that 45% of these new voters are under the age of 30 and 49% are people of color. In addition, Abrams tells NPR that she and her team were able to get rid of the “exact match” policy before the 2020 election.

Similar to Abrams, LaTosha Brown, co-founder of the Black Voters Matter Fund which works to increase voter registration and turnout and expand voting rights policies, used an election loss to fuel her desire to create change. In 1998, Brown ran for State Board of Education in Alabama’s 5th district against incumbent Democrat Willie Paul. It was her first time running for office, and Brown tells CNBC Make It that the race was so close that it took seven days for the winner to be announced, with Brown losing by a little over 200 votes. Minutes after the election was certified, she said she received a call from the state’s Democratic Party letting her know that 800 ballots had been found in a safe by the county sheriff. Brown says she was told that it was too late for the ballots to be counted. To fix the issue, she says she was told that she could seek legal action, but as a grassroots candidate, Brown says she didn’t have the money to do so.

Today, Brown’s Black Voters Matter Fund does work in Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Alabama and Mississippi to ensure that Black communities are not only registered to vote but also understand the power of their vote. BVM also does work to advocate for the expansion of voting rights policies that include early voting, resistance to voter ID laws and a strengthening of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Leah Aden, deputy director of litigation at the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, refers to the Voting Rights Act as “one of the most successful pieces of legislation in our history,” and says that the fight to uphold its protections are ongoing, especially following the 2013 Shelby vs. Holder Supreme Court decision. With this decision, states are no longer required to have voting changes pre-approved, including polling place changes, changes to candidate qualifications or changes to voter ID laws, says Aden. As a result, she says voter suppression has been on the rise across the country, particularly in states with large populations of Black and Brown voters. Since the 2013 Supreme Court decision, Aden has testified before Congress with Abrams and other community leaders to restore voter right protection laws throughout the country.

The 2020 U.S. presidential election is considered one of the most consequential in modern history, and poll numbers are showing that the efforts of Abrams, Brown, Aden and so many other activists are paying off with a record number of Black voters casting a vote. In states like Wisconsin and Michigan, where President Trump won in 2016, NBC News is reporting Biden as the projected winner after ballots were counted in cities with a high population of Black voters including Detroit and the greater Milwaukee area.

In Georgia and Pennsylvania, where votes are still being counted, CNBC reported Friday that Biden has taken a lead in Georgia and Pennsylvania. If Biden wins Georgia, this will be the first time the state has backed a Democratic presidential candidate since 1992. Pennsylvania, which backed Barack Obama in 2012, voted in favor of Trump in 2016.

Regardless of the final outcome of the election, Black women, who tend to vote at higher rates than other groups, with 94% also voting in favor of Hillary Clinton in 2016, continue to prove that they’re the Democratic Party’s most loyal voting group.
*********************
Then there were labor efforts to reach people in person at their home during a pandemic, a potentially dangerous activity but the canvassers took precautions and it worked. Labor unions received enough money to pay their unemployed members to go door to door in Arizona, Las Vegas and Philadelphia and thereby increased Biden’s votes. See
https://www.alternet.org/2020/11/joe-biden-union/
11/6/20
On Wednesday, the day after the election, leaders from SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania—part of the nationwide Service Employees International Union, the state group represents 45,000 caregivers—joined with Black Voters Matter, Our Future PA and other pro-labor, progressive organizations on the Harrisburg Capitol steps for a "Count Every Vote" rally. They plan to reassemble as outstanding ballots in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Georgia and North Carolina continue to be tabulated.

"We knocked on the doors of 575,000 voters across Philadelphia's Black and Brown neighborhoods that had low turnout in 2016," Unite Here Local 274 President Rosslyn Wuchinich told reporters during a Thursday press conference. "In those neighborhoods, we identified 60,000 Philadelphia voters who pledged to us to in person in contactless conversations to vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris."

According to Wuchinich, half of those voters had not voted in 2016.
"We know that we made a significant difference in Pennsylvania in this election," she said.

Black and Latino workers laid-off from jobs with the Philadelphia Public School System constitute the majority of Unite Here Local 634's membership.

"The members I work with are primarily Black leaders in the Philadelphia school district who need to see a change in this country," Local 634 President Nicole Hunt told reporters. "They've been dealing with racial injustice, joblessness and folks who have just lost hope in this system. In 2016, these people did not vote that we targeted—and we were able to give them their voice back and let them know that they matter."

Unite Here succeeded in knocking on nearly 3 million doors on behalf of the Biden/Harris ticket in the months leading up to the Nov, election.

Unite Here Local 11 represents more than 30,000 hospitality workers in Southern California and Arizona. Union canvassers ranging in age from 15 to 72, started knocking on doors for the Biden/Harris on blistering hot days back in July. When it was over, the union had reportedly put as many as 500 people in the field and interacted with more than 250,000 voters.
"We formed our team from some of the most devastated people, Local 11 Co-President Susan Minato told reporters during the virtual press conference. "These were laid-off hospitality workers who really did not know—and still do not know—if they will go back to a job."

Unite Here Secretary-Treasurer Gwen Mills told reporters: "We believe the saviors of democracy are working people."

Numerous labor leaders around the country have already stated that Trump would spark a general strike if he tries to subvert the will of the electorate. According to Yarnell "everything is on the table."

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/unions-biden-michigan-arizona_n_5fa5aed9c5b6f21920db2ff7
11/6/20
Trece Andrews spent the last three months phone-banking and sometimes canvassing for Joe Biden in Michigan. The nursing home worker focused her efforts on Detroit residents and fellow members of the Service Employees International Union, telling them a Biden administration would protect their health care and do more to raise their wages.
With Biden on the cusp of winning the White House, Andrews is feeling proud of her efforts.
“A lot of people, once I started having conversations, they had the same concerns,” said Andrews, 50. “We put in a lot of hard work. I feel like we’ll win.”
Although several battleground states remain too close to call, Biden is on track to win the necessary 270 electoral votes if his leads hold. With a Democratic presidency close at hand, unions say they played a critical role in turning members and other voters out at the polls, especially in dense urban areas of swing states, like Detroit, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Las Vegas.
“In Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, Joe Biden’s firewall was union-made,” Trumka said.
(Richard Trumka, is head of the AFL-CIO.)

SEIU and the Fight for $15 said their canvassers knocked on 155,000 doors in Michigan in the run-up to Nov. 3.

The hospitality union Unite Here carried out an aggressive door-knocking campaign in Nevada, Arizona, Florida and Pennsylvania, arguing that it could be done safely and was crucial to defeating Trump. Its Nevada local, the Culinary Workers Union, is well known for its get-out-the-vote muscle in Clark County that boosts Democratic candidates.

Many union members who took part in the paid canvassing program had been laid-off from their jobs in the hotel and food service industries, and Unite Here said it consulted epidemiologists to make sure its efforts were safe.

The union did not shy away from taking some credit for turnout in cities like Las Vegas, Phoenix and Philadelphia, all of which could play a deciding factor in the race.

“We did not want an excuse not to go out on the doors,” D. Taylor, the union’s president, said Thursday. “We’re going to deliver Arizona, Nevada and Pennsylvania. We rolled up our sleeves ... and we were getting people to vote.”

Rosslyn Wuchinich, president of the union’s Philadelphia local, said its members hit 575,000 doors in Philadelphia during the campaign. She said 60,000 residents the union reached had pledged to vote for Biden, and that approximately 30,000 of those people said they did not vote in 2016.

Unite Here also ran a program specifically in Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix. Votes from Maricopa continue to be counted as of Friday and will help determine whether Arizona falls in Biden’s column. In a batch of Maricopa results released by election officials Friday, Trump had a slight edge over Biden. (Arizona’s electoral votes, however, appear to still be in Biden’s column.)

Susan Minato, co-president of Unite Here Local 11, which includes California and Arizona, said the union had between 350 and 500 members knocking on doors each week in Maricopa, which is more than 30% Latino. She said the fact that the pandemic kept so many residents at home led to a high contact rate, and that canvassers were able to reach 250,000 people going door-to-door.

Minato said the main message canvassers wanted to convey was that people’s votes would be counted and that they would matter.

“They were out there hitting the doors way ahead of everybody else,” she said of the union’s members. “It’s the face-to-face that pulls the vote out.”

****************
There were other victories besides the fact that a Biden win means Social Security is saved, and will probably improve.

Mississippi has finally dropped its Confederate flag, which it had since 1894, and replaced it with a magnolia flag. Arizona, admitted to the union in 1912, voted Republican from 1920-28, 1952-1992, and 2000-2016, has voted Democrat for president. Nevada, which has been voting continuously Democrat since 2008 for president, did so again in this election. Texas, a former Confederate state which had 30% of the population in slavery, with a massive phone call effort, increased its possibility of ending being a Republican state by 2024, which it has been continuously since 1980, giving Biden 46% of the vote, 5.2 million votes, a vast increase over Clinton’s 3.8 million votes in 2016. When Texas joins California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico, we will have a Far West Blue Wall that more than matches the Midwest Blue Wall of Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Minnesota as with Texas’ 38 Electoral College votes, we can put an end to the Republican Party.

Georgia, a former Confederate state where 44% of the population were slaves, voted Republican in 1964, voted for segregationist George Wallace in 1968, then Republican Nixon in 1972, Republican in 1984 and 1988, and Republican 1996-2016, has a good possibility of voting Democrat this year with 49.5% or 2,461,000 vote for Biden over Trump’s 49.3% or 2,454,000. Clinton received 1.8 million votes in Georgia in 2016. North Carolina, a former Confederate state where 36% of the population were slaves, voted Republican in 1928, 1968, 1972, 1980-2004, 2012 and 2016, has come close to voting Democrat with 48.7% or 2.6 million going to Biden, while Trump has 50.1% or 2.7 million. In 2016, Clinton received 2.1 million votes out of 4.4 million votes in North Carolina. Florida, a former Confederate state where 44% of the population were slaves, has been voting Republican 1920-1928, 1952-1960, 1968, 1972, 1980-1992, 2000, 2004, and 2016, 47.9% or 5.2 million voted Democrat so far, slightly less than 51.2% or 5.6 million Republican so far. In 2016, Clinton won 4.5 million votes out of 9 million.

Victory, Victory is our Cry! The Class Struggle is the Reason Why!
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