Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton received praise from a major union boss Wednesday for winning another four states in the Democratic presidential primary over rival Sen. Bernie Sanders.
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) is one of the biggest unions to back Clinton at 1.6 million members. Clinton was able to secure Tuesday primary victories in Florida, Ohio, Illinois, and North Carolina. Union President Lee Saunders praised the primary outcomes as a victory for working families.
“They trust her to be the champion our families need in the White House and to deliver on her promise of breaking down the barriers that hold our communities back,” Saunders declared in a statement. “That’s why the majority of union members nationwide chose to endorse Hillary Clinton, and are supporting her at ballot boxes and caucuses across the country.”
Saunders said Clinton’s progressive plans to raise incomes, hold corporate leaders accountable and support for strong unions helped her win. Though, Sanders has also been an advocate for those issues and has been more aligned with what unions have been advocating for, such as a national $15 minimum wage. Clinton argues the national minimum wage shouldn’t exceed $12 an hour.
“AFSCME members in yesterday’s primary states joined with other working families to knock on tens of thousands of doors and turn out thousands of early vote supporters,” Saunders added. “Public service workers will never quit working to elect a president who shares our passion for public service.”
AFSCME decided to back Clinton Oct. 23 after first delaying its endorsement. It was among a few unions that decided to back Clinton, not long after Vice President Joe Biden decided he would not run for president. A few national unions, like the AFL-CIO, are still holding off announcing endorsements.
Clinton won her biggest union endorsement Nov. 17 from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). She has also secured support from the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), the American Federation of Teachers and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, among other large unions.
Sanders has still done well among unionized workers but has lost traction throughout the election. He seemed destined to win over the labor movement early on with local unions moving to back him, but Clinton eventually got ahead.
Sanders won his biggest union endorsement Dec. 17 from the Communications Workers of America (CWA). Former CWA President Larry Cohen pledged in July his support for Sanders and is now leading the coalition Labor for Bernie which consists mostly of local unions across the country that support the Vermont senator.
The Sanders’ campaign did not respond to a request for comment by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
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