Steelworkers Union Shifts Political Focus From Federal to State Elections

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During an interview with The UpTake at Netroots Nation, United Steelworkers President Leo Gerard said that, in the future, organized labor would invest more resources in state politics. The Steelworkers have traditionally spent 70 percent of their political donations and manpower to influence national elections, and only 30 percent on state elections. But Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s assault on collective bargaining rights, and organized labor’s existential struggle in Madison this past winter, have convinced Gerard that state politics cannot be ignored.

Jacob Wheeler

In addition to shooting videos for The UpTake, Jacob Wheeler is a contributing editor at the progressive political magazine In These Times, publishes the Glen Arbor Sun in his native Michigan, and authored "Between Light and Shadow," a recent book about the Guatemalan adoption industry. Wheeler's stories have appeared in such magazines as the Utne Reader, Earth Island Journal, Rotarian and Teaching Tolerance magazine, and newspapers including the San Francisco Chronicle and Christian Science Monitor. He speaks fluent Spanish, German and Danish.

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