“Citizen-driven, community-based, bipartisan coalition” We Are Ohio is now sharing Communist Party USA materials on its official Facebook page, linking to the Communist Party “People’s World” website in a January 24 post. With 110,000 fans, the We Are Ohio page on Facebook is currently the union front group’s main channel of communication to its supporters.
Regarding Ohio Republicans, We Are Ohio wrote, “Lets [sic] make sure we don’t let them bring No Rights At Work to Ohio” and shared a link to a January 18 People’s World story.
People’s World is a Marxist “daily news website of, for and by the 99% and the direct descendant of the Daily Worker.”
In his update on the workplace freedom campaign in Ohio, Bill Obbagy – editor of union newspaper The Cleveland Citizen – assured People’s World readers that “the anti-union measure hasn’t gained much traction, despite some smug predictions that it’s just a matter of time.”
Obbagy reported that the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law is collecting signatures for the Ohio Workplace Freedom Amendment, which is not accurate. Although Maurice Thompson of the 1851 Center wrote the amendment, Ohioans for Workplace Freedom is the group circulating petitions to place the amendment before voters.
Obbagy also understated by more than 66 percent the number of signatures required to put the Workplace Freedom Amendment on the ballot, writing that proponents have “been trying since last year to gather a minimum of 231,147 valid names of registered voters.” Based on statute, which requires valid signatures totaling 10 percent of the most recent gubernatorial election’s turnout, Ohioans for Workplace Freedom will need to collect a minimum of 385,253 valid signatures.
We Are Ohio presents itself as a moderate organization, but We Are Ohio’s funding and allies are almost uniformly liberal. In 2011, former Obama “Green Jobs Czar” and current progressive activist Van Jones addressed a We Are Ohio rally. Recently, We Are Ohio has mixed propaganda from a variety of progressive sources with its outdated AFL-CIO talking points against making union dues optional.
Following the December 2012 passage of a workplace freedom law in Michigan, We Are Ohio compared Michigan legislators to the Japanese who bombed Pearl Harbor. Weeks later, We Are Ohio promoted multiple stories smearing workplace freedom as racist, including one fringe-left blog post depicting workplace freedom supporters in Ku Klux Klan hoods.