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To the editor:
Rumor has it that organized labor will support Kenny Guinn for governor over state Sen. Joe Neal. This is the same Kenny Guinn, a Republican, who is supported by the same Republican Party that is trying to use "paycheck protection" as a way of de-funding organized labor's "supposed" efforts to support Democratic candidates. This is a major issue between organized labor and Republicans.
Support Mr. Guinn over state Sen. Neal, a Democrat who has been in the forefront for organized labor for years?
The leaders of organized labor say they are being "pragmatic." If organized labor calls a strike and one crosses that picket line to feed his family, he is forever branded with the name "scab." If organized labor crosses the political party picket line for a "friend" in Carson City, it is not being "pragmatic." It's being a political prostitute.
With friends like this, I can see Democratic candidates watching their backs when labor says, "We support you."
DANIEL D. BANTA
Senior Labor Leader Exposes Guinn
John Stralla of Sparks, NV, is the longest serving member
of the Nevada AFL-CIO executive board. He recently sent the following
letter to Nevada workers.
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
I have served on the executive board of the Nevada AFL-CIO for 27 years. I am personally writing to ask your support for Sen. Joe Neal (D-North Las Vegas) in his race for governor. He has been organized labor's most consistent friend in the Nevada State Senate since 1973. Please consider donating early money. Some Nevada locals which have already done so used funds approved but unspent from the 1996 election cycle.
The governor's chair is critically important to the future of the union movement as we try to restore some of the devastating cuts made to the State Industrial Insurance System. Sen. Neal's likely opponent is wealthy businessman Kenny Guinn who has been creating a public relations image of union friendliness. I know better than that and so should you. Guinn recently took positions against collective bargaining for state employees, opposed to affirmative action and in favor of Nevada's right-to-work law. The same day he addressed the Nevada AFL-CIO convention last September, Guinn disclosed taking a substantial campaign contribution from the Elardis at the Frontier Hotel. He sat on the board of Boyd Gaming, which tried to bust the Carpenters Union at the Stardust Hotel and kept them without a pay raise for 10 years.
My union, IBEW 1245, lost members when Mr. Guinn was CEO of Southwest Gas. The company, under his control, offered improper incentives to convince workers to decertify our union. Our members, other individual utility ratepayers and small businesses will lose billions if electric and gas deregulation moves forward as proposed. Small users will see their rates skyrocket, while large businesses will enjoy huge financial windfalls.
Sen. Neal has made looking out for the small ratepayer a primary issue in his campaign. While his term in the State Senate does not expire until 2000, I would rather have him looking out for us from the much more powerful governor's office. Guinn currently leads statewide (by 11 points), but the race is dead even in Las Vegas where most (67%) of the votes are. Please donate the maximum amount to our only proven friend in the race, Sen. Joe Neal. Your prompt consideration will be personally appreciated.
You can write to Sen. Neal at
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