AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka refused to denounce the vitriolic rhetoric that his fellow union leader, Teamsters President James Hoffa, espoused in a speech on Monday.
While warming up a Labor Day crowd in Detroit before a speech by President Obama, Hoffa said unions should fight a “war” with tea partiers and congressional Republicans. “President Obama, this is your army,” Hoffa declared. “We are ready to march. Let’s take these sons of bitches out and take America back to where America we belong.”
On CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight,” Trumka said he “probably wouldn’t have chose the adjectives [Hoffa] used” but that he supports the premise.
“I think Jim Hoffa’s speaking for the anger that millions of Americans have,” Trumka said. “These people [tea partiers and congressional Republicans] are playing political brinksmanship and not allowing us to create jobs and they’re not willing to help us get the country moving. Some of them even announced that they want the president to fail.”
Trumka went on to declare that tea partiers “don’t have the right to say they’re the only patriotic ones out there,” especially “when they want the country to fail and 25 million people not to get back to work.”
“So, I think Jim Hoffa was probably speaking about the anger, and what he was saying was all politicians that don’t stand up for jobs and all politicians who don’t help us get back to work and right this economy, we ought to take them out of office,” Trumka said.