Hoffa’s Weak Contracts Can’t Hide Behind His Father’s Famous Name
July 2006. The 2006 IBT election will be a rematch between Hoffa and Tom Leedham, who squared off in 2001. While the names at the top of the ballot are the same as in 2001, the similarities end there.
In 2001, Hoffa was an incumbent without a record. In three years in office, he had never negotiated a UPS or freight contract. In the few bargaining units where Hoffa had negotiated a contract, the members voted against him. But for the most part Hoffa could still run on his father’s celebrity.
This year, Hoffa has to run on his record and it’s not pretty. His “Best Contract Ever” is so weak that he’s back at the bargaining table to try to fix it two years before it expires. Hundreds of thousands of Teamsters have been hit with pension and health care cuts after Hoffa guaranteed his contracts would maintain or increase our benefits.
Tom Leedham has a proven record in exactly the areas where Hoffa has failed.
Winning Strong Contracts
Leedham has negotiated industry-leading contracts as the head of Oregon Local 206 for 20 years, where he represents warehouse, UPS, freight, sanitation, public employees and other Teamsters.
Leedham has eliminated Local 206’s multi-tier contracts that paid different wages and benefits to Teamsters doing the same work. Leedham’s contracts brought all members up to the top scale.
Restoring Good Benefits
When Leedham took office, the Local 206 health trust was nearly bankrupt. Retiree healthcare coverage was being eliminated.
Leedham instituted reforms and won higher employer contributions. He turned that fund around and reversed the benefit cuts.
Today, Local 206 members enjoy a top-notch health benefit with no or low co-pays. Leedham has restored affordable health benefits for retirees.
The Hoffa Legacy
Hoffa’s record dues hike doubled the budget of the International Union. Did Hoffa double our union’s power? Did he double the backing Teamsters get from our IBT? Or did he just double the PR we get in our homes?
Hoffa won the last election on his father’s famous last name. This year, he’ll have to answer for his own infamous record.