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Working Families Unite for Progress, Seek to End Focus on Bogus Wedge Issues

Ed Sills
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 Primary election results signal a united Democratic coalition is prepared to fight for change on Nov. 8, Texas AFL-CIO President Rick Levy said today.  “Up and down the ballot, and especially in the near-92 percent vote to nominate Beto O’Rourke to be the next Texas Governor, Democrats showed they are united in support for leaders who will fight for more affordable and accessible health care, an education system that prepares children at a world-class level and honors the work of teachers, jobs of the future that can save the planet, and a fair shot for working families,” Levy said.   In addition to O’Rourke’s landslide, Levy cited an outright victory by Greg Casar in a multi-candidate Congressional District 35 field, an apparent runoff achieved by Jessica Cisneros in CD 28 against an entrenched incumbent, and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo’s easy nomination win as examples of labor-backed candidates who connected deeply with the needs of working families.  “The strong performances by Greg Casar, Jessica Cisneros and Lina Hidalgo are prime examples of working families sending a strong message that the time for change is now and they want candidates who will fight with us to build a better Texas,” Levy said.   Levy said Democrats are united for change from an ugly status quo: “Voters made it clear they have little patience for more of the same from our current leadership: voter suppression highlighted in this very election by a vote-by-mail fiasco, censorship of books, subversion of academic freedom, neglect of the energy grid, scapegoating of immigrants, attacks on transgender children, and our state’s constant invention of wedge issues that subvert the will of the majority.”  Levy noted O’Rourke’s nomination for Governor was far more decisive than his nomination in 2018 for the U.S. Senate, as Gov. Greg Abbott’s support from Republican primary voters waned.  “While Republicans fight over who can best turn the clock backward, Beto O’Rourke has united Democrats around priorities that matter to Texans,” Levy said. “Beto’s campaign is the product of years of building a movement the right way. He has taken nothing for granted and he has earned the trust and goodwill of working families across the state.”  The Texas AFL-CIO COPE Committee will meet later this month to consider whether to update candidate endorsements in light of the primary results.  The Texas AFL-CIO is the state labor federation consisting of 240,000 affiliated union members who advocate for working families in Texas.