(CHICAGO) – Working families in Illinois scored a major victory today with the announcement that Gov. Pat Quinn was elected to a full four-year term. Union volunteers and representatives coordinated field operations in key locations throughout Cook County to reach voters directly, as additional Teamsters manned phone banks, distributed literature and drove residents-in-need to the polls.
“Teamsters in Chicago and across Illinois put their boots to the ground to help elect a leader who has spent his career protecting working families and fighting for labor,” said John T. Coli, International Vice President and President of Teamsters Joint Council 25. “As the first union to endorse Pat Quinn, Joint Council 25 was prepared to do whatever was necessary to secure
a better future for our members. In this election, we’ve shown our strength in numbers.”
Following the governor’s victory in the February primaries, the Teamsters laid significant foundations for field operations in and around Chicago. As early as May, Teamster volunteers began housewalks for Gov. Quinn throughout northern Illinois, with groups of 15-20 members knocking on doors and educating voters each week.
Over a six-month period, Joint Council 25 coordinated canvases with the Quinn campaign to reach more than 30,000 households countywide. Teamsters from the Joint Council’s 20 affiliated local unions participated in dozens of housewalks leading up to November.
With consistent member participation inside the Quinn campaign, the union expanded its communication efforts in October as Teamsters Local 700 established a remote phone bank at its union offices. Four days a week throughout the month, volunteers from several Joint Council 25 affiliates helped Local 700 place tens of thousands of calls to voters in support of the governor.
“In the months and weeks prior to Election Day, the Teamsters¹ political efforts only expanded. Our members and staff were volunteering regularly in their local union halls, in their communities and with the campaign to send a clear message that labor supports Pat Quinn,” Coli said.
By 5 a.m. on Nov. 2, more than 150 Teamster volunteers kicked off Election Day activities around Cook County. Joint Council 25 volunteers walked the streets in more than 25 Cook County townships and five Chicago wards on Election Day, and distributed handbills for Gov. Quinn at more than a dozen Metra and CTA train stations.
“The commitment of hardworking union members to build a reliable base for Pat Quinn had a critical impact on the outcome of this election,” Coli said. “The Teamsters should be extraordinarily proud of their sacrifice and assistance to the Quinn campaign. With just a few thousand votes securing victory, the role of labor truly made a difference.”