Executives and officers of America’s largest labor unions make a mint pandering to the workers whose interests Big Labor supposedly serves. Many Americans may not realize that union leaders are powerful members of the “1 percent” regularly smeared by union propaganda.
President Obama, who is all but unanimously supported by union bosses, identifies as “millionaires” any household earning $250,000 or more. By the president’s own definition, many of his most important backers should be penalized for their success.
Following are quotes from seven of the nation’s wealthiest union leaders, accompanied by their annual pay as reported to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Union bosses’ salaries, travel expenses, and other benefits are taken out of workers’ paychecks, and the amounts listed below do not include insurance or retirement benefits.
|“Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney have a prescription for the U.S. economy that was written by the same corporate interests that got us into this mess in the first place. We’ve all seen the depths the right-wing extremists governors will go to at the expense of working families […]”
Former American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) International President Gerald McEntee, 12/06/2011 endorsement of Barack Obama
McEntee was paid $1,121,988 in 2012
Including AFSCME’s new president, 8 other staffers & officers were paid more than $250,000 in 2012
|“Americans are under attack. There are quite a few well-funded, right-wing corporate politicians trying to take away our rights and those benefits, which we worked so hard to attain.”
Transportation Communication Union (TCU) President Bob Scardelletti, 04/01/2011 statement on AFL-CIO “WE ARE ONE” rallies
Scardelletti was paid $630,053 in 2012
9 other TCU employees & officers were paid more than $260,000 in 2012, including a secretary-treasurer paid over $475,000
|“The American people will not stand for another debate that is bogged down in inside the beltway politics, like the disgrace witnessed in the debt ceiling negotiations. Tax giveaways to corporations who do their hiring overseas and the protection of subsidies for Big Oil have no place in this debate.”
Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA) President Joe Nigro, undated statement in support of Obama’s September 2011 American Jobs Act
Nigro was paid $459,643 in 2012
The SMWIA secretary-treasurer was also paid more than $410,000 in 2012
|“[…] we need to actively support candidates who share our vision of a robust construction industry providing broad prosperity, not wealth distribution back to the richest 1 percent.”
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) President Edwin Hill, 04/30/2012 remarks at AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Legislative Conference
Hill was paid $380,688 in 2012
6 other IBEW officers were paid more than $250,000 in 2012
|“Unions are once again under attack along with a worker’s right to join a union and engage in collective bargaining. Not only that but during the steepest downturn since the Great Depression, we’re seeing corporations and their political allies scheming to rebuild the country’s economic recovery on the backs of the middle class.”
International Union of Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers (BAC) President James Boland, 09/03/2011 Labor Day message to members
Boland was paid $330,242 in 2012
3 other BAC employees & officers were paid over $275,000 in 2012
|“Each of the Republican candidates for President has lined up squarely behind the policies of the Republican House leadership; policies that benefit only the wealthiest among us, multinational corporate bosses and Wall Street titans. These policies would erode the standard of living of working families and jeopardize the future for our children and grandchildren.”
Former Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers (BCTGM) President Frank Hurt, 04/05/2012 endorsement of Barack Obama
Hurt was paid $315,229 in 2012
|“Each of the Republican presidential candidates, on the other hand, has pledged to uphold the special privileges of Wall Street and the 1%–privileges that have produced historic economic inequality and drowned out the voices of working people in America.”
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, 03/13/2012 endorsement of Barack Obama
Trumka was paid $301,932 in 2012
2 other AFL-CIO officers were paid more than $255,000 in 2012