Hoffa Takes Aim at Teamster Elections

Hoffa is retiring as General President at the end of next year, and he wants to take Teamster democracy with him. Last week, Hoffa told the press about a plan to block contested elections for International Union office, beginning in 2026. We can’t let that happen. 

The nominating rules for the 2021 Teamster Election cannot be changed. Candidates who are nominated by five percent of the delegates at the Teamster Convention are guaranteed to appear on the ballot.

But Hoffa told the press that “he’s sure” that a proposal will come up to raise the nomination threshold.

That might seem reasonable. But if you think a five percent threshold is too low, think again.

Every Teamster election has revealed that the vote by Convention Delegates does not reflect the will of the members.

The Lesson of 2016

In 2016, about 94 percent of the delegates in the Southern Region voted for the Hoffa Slate. The Teamsters United candidates in the South were nominated by just 6 and 8 percent of the delegates.

But when the members voted it was a completely different story. More than 57% of the members in the South voted for Teamsters United.

Nationally, over 90 percent of the delegates voted for Hoffa. But Teamsters United candidate Fred Zuckerman won 49 percent of the vote from the members.

A nomination threshold of just 10 percent would have meant no Teamster election in 2016, when a majority of U.S. Teamsters voted for Teamsters United over Hoffa.

Their Plan to Eliminate Elections

Hoffa and friends have made no secret that they want to eliminate Teamster elections.

At the last Teamster Convention, Hoffa called on Bernadette McCulloch Kelly, an International Rep on the Hoffa-Hall payroll, to denounce having an election as a waste of money

 “This Union is threatened by a small minority who will force the IBT to spend millions of dollars on an election,” Kelly said.

Members proved we are no “small minority.” Now, we have to organize a majority to save Teamster democracy.

Protect Teamster Democracy

The nominating rules for the 2021 Teamster Election cannot be changed. But the delegates at the 2021 Convention can vote to make it harder for candidates to get on the ballot beginning in 2026.

We can’t let that happen.

General President candidate Sean O’Brien and the Teamsters United Slate have pledged to oppose any attempt to raise the nominating threshold to make it harder for Teamsters to run for International Union office.

Teamsters for a Democratic Union (TDU) will be helping members run for Convention Delegate to protect fair elections, including the current nominating rules.

We’ll also be helping members run for Convention Delegate to eliminate the Two-Thirds Rule from the Teamster Constitution. Hoffa used the Two-Thirds Rule to impose the UPS contract even after it was rejected by a majority of the members.

If you care about democratic elections and fair contract votes, get involved.

Click here to find out more.

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