The President's Column: We Must Crush Candidate Trump

June 9, 2016

With Donald Trump the presumed Republican candidate for President, here are the ways he would be good for us healthcare workers and 1199 members. Zero. None. That’s about it; he will only do us harm.

Trump is a racist bigot. This is the man that told his biographer, “Laziness is a trait you find in the Blacks.” Trump would not denounce the endorsement of the Ku Klux Klan, condoned the beating of Black Lives Matter protesters at his rallies, and led the campaign to deny Barack Obama’s U.S. birthright and thereby his legitimacy as President of our country.

The U.S. Department of Justice has sued Trump twice for refusing to rent properties to Black people. He is also the guy who said, “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are little short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.”

Of the nearly 12 million Mexican immigrants in our country—a group made up mostly of hardworking and lower-income families—Trump famously announced, “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.”

There are seven billion human beings on this earth; 1.6 billion, or 23 percent, believe in Islam, the world’s largest religion. Trump wants to ban them from the United States. His campaign slogan should be, “Make America Hate Again.”

His bigotry toward women—80 percent of our 1199 members—is legendary. When Fox News’ Megyn Kelly called him out during the GOP debate last August, telling him, “You have called women you don’t like ‘fat pigs’, ‘dogs’, ‘slobs’, and ‘disgusting animals,’” Trump laughed it off, claimed he doesn’t “have the time for total political correctness.” Then he suggested that Kelly’s question was the result of her menstrual cycle. It probably goes without saying that Trump is a notorious union-buster. Multiple lawsuits have targeted Trump’s businesses over the years with allegations of anti-union intimidation. In one case, the Trump Organization paid $475,000 to settle a claim with nearly 300 Los Angeles golf club employees in a class-action suit alleging unpaid wages and age discrimination, among other offenses.

In Las Vegas, the National Labor Relations Board charged Trump International Hotel management with illegally attempting to coerce workers into voting against unionization. Hotel employees voted by 85 percent to organize with the Culinary Union Local 226, but management hasn’t recognized the union. Not surprisingly, Trump’s staff is heavily comprised of immigrants whose terms of work lag behind union hospitality workers in benefits, wages, and job security.

Clearly, this Presidential election campaign will be like no other we’ve seen in our lifetimes. Racism and “white nationalism” have moved from the margins into the center of the GOP campaign and have become the rallying cry for discontented white voters. The hatred that has been unleashed on Barack Obama for the eight years of his Presidency has crystallized in the person of Trump and been incorporated as a central strategy of his campaign.

Division of the American people—white against people of color, native born against immigrant workers, men against women, straight against LGBTQ—will be the primary weapon used against us in an attempt to destroy progressive taxation, voting rights, Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare and Obamacare, environmental protection, abortion rights, jobs programs, fairness to immigrants, union rights, public education and everything else we have fought for. Trump aims to privatize much of what remains of government and otherwise restructure it to the benefit of the very affluent and the big corporations.

The consequences of a Trump Presidency should be a wake-up call for all of us. A narrow defeat for Trump is not enough. Our primary aim should be to not just defeat him, but to crush him and all that he represents. I am fully confident that we 1199ers are up to the task and ready to fight like never before. It’s not being overly dramatic to say our lives depend on it.

In interviews with The New York Times, dozens of Trump female employees and women he’s dated reveal a long pattern of sexual abuse and exploitation. He would shut down the government rather than fund Planned Parenthood, wants to outlaw abortion and reproductive rights of women, and repeal the Affordable Care Act— which has extended health coverage to millions of women and children.

The next President is likely to name at least one and as many as three U.S. Supreme Court Justices, who will shape our future for decades. How important is this? When Justice Antonin Scalia died, the Court lost the man who drove the gutting of the Voting Rights Act; led the Court on Citizens United, which put our elected officials up for sale to the highest bidder; and who led the Court to shut down the Florida vote count in 2000 and name George W. Bush President. So best believe the Court appointments are crucial.

The mass media, which has gotten nearly everything else wrong in this election campaign, endlessly report that Trump’s appeal is to the “white working class.” But The New York Times did a study of Trump’s voters as they left the polls and found that, “Trump’s voters are better off economically compared with most Americans.” For example, Trump voters in Maryland average $95,000 a year in income; in Massachusetts, $93,000; New York, $85,000; and Florida, $70,000.

Trump is the spoiled, obnoxious billionaire he has always been—with his five houses, including the 58-bedroom Mar-A-Lago mansion in Florida, which has an annual $600,000 property tax. Born into wealth, Trump attended private schools and inherited $40 million when he was just 28 years old.

In the November Fox News debate, the billionaire candidate said that the current minimum wage of $7.25 is too high. To build his mid-Manhattan Trump Tower, he used Polish workers, many of them undocumented, working 12-hour shifts seven days a week at $5.00 an hour off the books.