Hoffa Caught Using Union Funds for Campaign Poll

July 27, 2005: The IBT election is more than a year away and already TDU has caught James Hoffa using members’ dues money for campaign purposes.

On July 15, independent Election Supervisor Richard Mark ruled that Hoffa used union funds to poll carhaulers on how they would rate Hoffa’s job approval. As a result of the violation, Hoffa was ordered to pay $2,000 to the union and to share the results of the poll with opposition candidates who later become accredited.

Hoffa inserted his campaign questions into an IBT poll of Teamsters who work for Allied Holdings, the largest carhaul employer. The members were also asked if they would accept mid-term contract concessions. On June 1 carhaulers got their first wage increase in three years, and Allied balked at paying it. Allied has been losing money (and cutting Teamster jobs) consistently for several years.

The poll questions were written by Hoffa’s campaign consultant, Richard Leebove, and his campaign manager, Todd Thompson. Neither has any experience representing carhaulers.

The election protest was filed by Allied driver and Local 957 member Rob Hackett and by TDU, both represented by attorney Barbara Harvey. Hoffa was represented by his campaign attorney and son, David Hoffa.