(WASHINGTON) – International Brotherhood of Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa, his running mate for General Secretary-Treasurer Ken Hall and their entire slate, were elected today by a wide margin in the 2011 Election of International Union Officers. According to unofficial results provided by the Office of the Election Supervisor, the Hoffa-Hall Slate defeated their two challengers with 60 percent of the vote.
“The members have spoken,” Hoffa said. “This is not just our slate’s victory but a victory for all working Americans who are fighting to save America’s middle class. We traveled across this country to mobilize our members to fight the right-wing attack on workers. Teamster members responded because they know it is not workers who are to blame for the crisis facing America – it is the greed and corruption of big business and Wall Street and their bought and paid for puppets in Congress.
“Now that this election is completed we will intensify our efforts in the fight for all working families,” Hoffa added. “The Teamsters strength is in organizing the unorganized, fighting for strong health care, good wages, secure retirement, and holding employers and politicians accountable.”
Hall told supporters that he was humbled by the overwhelming support of the members and pledged to ramp up the campaign against corporate greed.
“We will never let up in the ongoing battle to provide good wages, benefits and working conditions for our 1.4 million members across North America, and organize tens of thousands of unrepresented workers. The right-wing corporate interests that are trying to destroy America’s middle class will find an energized and mobilized Teamsters Union that will fight to defend the principles that made this country great.”
The Hoffa-Hall Slate swept all five regions of the Union, the East, Central, South, West and Canada.
Hoffa first took office following his victory in December 1998 and was re-elected in 2001 and 2006 by substantial margins. By winning today, Hoffa is elected to another five-year term that will begin in mid-March 2012.
Having held office for nearly 13 years, Hoffa is the third longest serving General President in the 108 year history of the Teamsters Union. Only Dan Tobin, who served for 47 years, and James R. Hoffa, who served for 14 years, have held office longer.
The country’s most recognized labor leader, Hoffa has been in the forefront in the fight to block anti-union legislation that popped up in states across the country following the 2010 off-year elections. He dubbed the right-wing offensive the “War on Workers” and has spent the last year leading rallies in Ohio, California, Wisconsin, Michigan and dozens of other states threatened by the anti-union forces.
Hoffa’s efforts culminated in the overwhelming victory for union members in Ohio this past Tuesday when Ohio voters defeated Issue 2, an anti-union measure that would have severely weakened collective bargaining rights for more than 350,000 public employees.
“Ohio voters sent a wake-up call to American politicians: If you try to blame workers for problems caused by Wall Street you will pay a price. If you attack workers, you will lose. But if you stand up and fight for the middle class, you can win,” Hoffa said.
Hoffa, Hall and their slate pledged to continue the progress the Teamsters have made in national bargaining, organizing and political action.
“2012 will be a watershed year for Teamsters and for this nation,” Hoffa said. “Under our leadership, the Teamsters Union will continue to be a force for change and will lead our nation in efforts to improve the lives of working families.”
Vote totals can be viewed at www.ibtvote.org.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, including more than 240,000 public service employees. Visit www.teamster.org for more information and follow us on Twitter @teamsterpower.