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Government & Politics

Ohio AFL-CIO Chief Says the Details Will Sink Trump's Angry Message in Ohio

Donald Trump speaking at one of his rallys

As expected, the AFL-CIO has formally endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. But the head of the labor coalition in Ohio acknowledges Donald Trump’s message resonates with some union members. 

Tim Burga says Hillary Clinton has earned union support through her detailed economic platform, and support for a higher minimum wage, collective bargaining and keeping jobs from heading overseas. He says union leadership will push those specifics hard – especially with Ohio members who are considering Donald Trump.

“So when Donald Trump says he wants to get tough on China, that sounds pretty good. Now, what does that mean? He doesn’t have one policy idea on what that means. So he’s just simply saying whatever he needs to say to try to make this emotional connection to tap into the anger that’s out there.”

Burga says many of the conversations that will swing potential Trump voters will be shop-floor chats between people who respect each other. He acknowledges union membership has continued to dwindle, but notes unions have a vaunted get-out-the-vote effort.

Trump lost the Ohio primary to Gov. John Kasich, but did well in the economically troubled eastern border of the state.