May 10, 2006
Bell gets AFL-CIO endorsement

Chris Bell threw a few rhetorical punches at the AFL-COPE convention yesterday.

Mr. Bell had previously focused his fire on Mr. Perry. But he spent much of this speech urging attendees of the AFL-CIO COPE Convention not to be swayed by Mrs. Strayhorn. He said he was the better candidate to represent labor on issues such as wages, workplace safety and union political rights.

"Carole Strayhorn speaking to a labor convention is like Godzilla running for the mayor of Tokyo," he said.

Mr. Bell, who has been running for governor for more than a year, is trying to convince core Democratic constituencies that if the party's base sticks together, he can win a split vote, despite disadvantages in fundraising and name recognition. But some groups that usually lean Democratic, such as the Texas State Teachers Association, have backed Mrs. Strayhorn as the most realistic alternative to unseat Mr. Perry.

"If we stick together, we don't have to put up with four more years of the Rick and Carole show," Mr. Bell said.

His approach worked, and he got the endorsement. Strayhorn had made some inroads into organized labor before this, so that's a key backing for him in his quest to keep enough of the Democratic base together to outscore Strayhorn and Perry in November.

His full speech is here. Bell is running an online fundraiser right now, if that moves you to help him out.

Note that while the AFL-CIO generally endorses Democrats, it's not always the case. This year for certain, I don't think anything can be taken for granted.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 10, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack