By Adam Pagnucco.
The Mid-Atlantic region of the Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA) has announced its endorsements in MoCo county-level races. The union is supporting Marc Elrich (County Executive), Andrew Friedson (Council D1), Ben Shnider (Council D3), Nancy Navarro (Council D4), Tom Hucker (Council D5) and Hans Riemer and Chris Wilhelm (Council At-Large).
LIUNA’s announcement on Twitter.
Elrich and Shnider are starting to roll up progressive endorsements; both are supported by SEIU Local 32BJ and Casa, while Shnider has the Sierra Club and Elrich has the AFL-CIO. Friedson looks like he is building the kind of business-labor coalition that once supported politicians like Doug Duncan. Navarro and Hucker have no opponents – so far.
LIUNA, SEIU and UFCW Local 400 (grocery store workers) are probably the most active unions in the Washington region that include at least some private sector members. LIUNA does not represent any MoCo county employees, but it does represent workers employed by the county’s private trash removal contractors. LIUNA’s main objective is getting the county to use project labor agreements on its construction projects which would mandate union representation of the workers on those jobs. While the union has not been a huge player in MoCo politics in the past, it did spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to get Cathy Pugh elected as Mayor of Baltimore in 2016.
[Disclosure: your author worked as a strategic researcher for LIUNA’s international office in 1994 and 1995.]