Sean O’Brien and Fred Zuckerman announced at a joint event in Boston that they will be leading a slate in the 2021 Teamster election with O’Brien running as General President and Zuckerman as General Secretary Treasurer.
Teamsters for a Democratic Union partnered with Zuckerman and other Teamsters to build the Teamsters United coalition which came within a few thousand votes of defeating Hoffa in the IBT election in 2016. Six International VPs on the Teamsters United slate were elected.
TDU urged Zuckerman to run for re-election as General President in 2021. Zuckerman opted to run for the number two position alongside O’Brien.
“Sean has shown through his leadership in New England that he knows how to unite Teamsters in action to stand up to the employers. Working together, we can put the Teamsters on the right track,” Zuckerman said in an announcement explaining his decision.
The change will spark debate and discussion among TDU members and Teamsters United activists.
O’Brien and Zuckerman were opponents in 2016 when O’Brien ran on the Hoffa slate. As an International Union Vice President and Joint Council leader, O’Brien has been a critic of TDU and an opponent of Teamster reformers.
Following the 2016 election, O’Brien reached out to Teamsters United leaders to work together on UPS contract negotiations, the ABF contract, and other issues.
The International Union election is in 2021—three years from now. The immediate tests ahead are the fight against contract givebacks at UPS and UPS Freight and local elections where reformers are taking on Hoffa-aligned local officers.
TDU will be in these fights. Our immediate priorities are working for good contracts, reforming locals, defending pensions, and educating members and building the voice of the rank and file.
We will work with Teamsters United to pursue these goals.
TDU will make endorsements and IBT election plans at a later date.