White House and unions clash over Lincoln
So what lesson should we take from the Blanche Lincoln primary victory last night against Democratic Lt. Governor Bill Halter?
Well a lot of people are divining a lot of things from her win, but the one I’m seeing the most is her victory spelled a defeat for Big Labor. The last count I saw said BL had pumped 10 million buckaroos into the primary fight – and not on Lincoln’s side.
Here’s how it breaks down. Lincoln was President Obama’s candidate. He’s made that clear, he has campaigned for her, he wanted her to win.
Bill Halter was labor’s chosen candidate and had the backing of the AFL-CIO, SEIU, AFSCME and other major unions. Ginormous amounts of union funds were used in an effort to defeat Obama’s candidate — by the left. That’s the point to be made here – this wasn’t opposition by the Tea Party, this was opposition funded by the natural allies of the Democratic party and, supposedly, the White House.
According to Ben Smith at Politico, once it was clear that Lincoln had prevailed, the White House couldn’t wait to make it clear that the unions were on the wrong sheet of political music. Smith said a WH official contacted him, saying:
“Organized labor just flushed $10 million of their members’ money down the toilet on a pointless exercise,” the official said. “If even half that total had been well-targeted and applied in key House races across this country, that could have made a real difference in November.”
In other words, “get with the program boys, and do it how we tell you to do it”.
Message sent, and received:
AFL-CIO spokesman Eddie Vale responds that “labor isn’t an arm of the Democratic Party.”
Yeah, right – at least not for today.
Way to firm up your support with your base Mr. President – apparently they’re good to go as long as they spend their members money the way he wants them too.