February 21st, 2008
10:10 AM ET
15 years ago

Union coalition backs Obama

(CNN) – The Change To Win coalition – seven unions that represent between five and six million members nationwide – became the latest labor group to endorse Barack Obama Thursday.

"We think it's time to bring this nomination to a close," said the group's chair, SEIU official Anna Burger. The group's leadership decided to endorse Obama during a Thursday morning conference call.

Change to Win, which broke away from the AFL-CIO after the last election cycle, is led by the heads of its seven member unions and three other labor leaders, including Burger.

A majority of the group’s member unions have already backed Obama: the Teamsters – which revealed their support for Obama Wednesday – UNITE Here, the Service Employees International Union and the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. The decision does not need to be unanimous.

The three other unions, which have not endorsed Obama, are the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, Laborers International Union, and United Farm Workers. United Farm Workers endorsed Hillary Clinton earlier this year.

Change to Win spokesman Greg Denier said there had been no negative votes on the endorsement, but that the three unions that had not yet backed Obama had abstained from the day’s vote. (He said the two unions that had not yet endorsed any candidate did not weigh in because they needed to complete an “internal process” before making any announcement on the presidential race.)

The New York senator has also received nods from several other unions, including the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees.

(updated Thursday afternoon to reflect official announcement)

–CNN’s Mark Preston and Rebecca Sinderbrand


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Barack Oprah

    I an proud that many people want the WORST president in the US history. We are making the history.

    "YES WE CAN"

    We want to have the WORST president ever and Obama will be it.

    OUR TIME WILL COME!!!!
    Go Obama!!!

    February 21, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  2. esther

    MICHELLE OBAMA has said that she is proud of this country for

    FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HER LIFE! ! just because her husband

    is running for office.

    well I AM PROUD OF THIS COUNTRY and we do not need

    that kind of person or attitude IN

    A FIRST LADY OF UNITED STATE.

    February 21, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  3. Jen-0-palooza

    This shouldn't matter, because according to Clintonites, it's all about Ohio and Texas.
    The thousands of people who are voting for or supporting Obama are insignificant in importance.
    Come on, Ohio and Texas, deliver Obama to us. We need to get this SHOW ON THE ROAD so this country can MOVE ON and recover from 16 years of self-loathing and domestic & international political unrest!

    We need a Uniter like Obama, NOW!

    February 21, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  4. mamady sylla (london)

    That is what change looks like.
    This endorsement is huge.
    Unions always back people' s choice.
    Go Obama.
    All behind his nomination.

    February 21, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |