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How Labor Can Break the Two Party System

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The following is an open letter, printed with permission, that union organizer Hugh Giordano is sending to every labor union in Philadelphia, as the 2011 local elections loom.  As a Green candidate for state representative in 2010, he received 23% of the vote in Philadelphia (beating the Republican), raised almost $30,000, and gave the Green Party of Philadelphia new life.  And that was just the beginning.
            STOP Supporting the Democrats and Republicans

Dear Union Brothers and Sisters,

My name is Hugh Giordano, and I am fellow union representative for the UFCW, Local 152. Many of you know me or have heard about me in my run for State Representative where I produced the highest percentage of vote of any third party candidate in a three-way race, beating the Republican in Philadelphia!

I produced this great victory because I stood for the issues, used basic union organizing skills, took NO corporate money, and had union support. Just imagine what I could have accomplished if I had all the unions behind me, the man power, and financial backing; I could have done so much more to defeat the CEO/corporate Democrat.

Although I did not win that election, I opened the doors for us, as a united labor front, to do great things for the future. We have a duty to do what is right and to fight back against the status quo. That is why we are labor leaders and chose this activist life. I use the word "activist' because that is what we are supposed to be, NOT businessmen and businesswomen.

Before I get into the meat of this letter, I want to make a few quick statements that I will always say and continue to support. We, as labor leaders, have a duty to the movement, our unions, and the members to do what is right, not what is safe! We are not pawns of the Democrats and Republicans, and we owe them nothing. The two parties have not done anything for our unions and the movement. Most people in elected positions in City Council have never even been a union member!  If you are a union leader and are afraid to support another party besides the Democrats because of retaliation. I suggest you retire and find another job! Sorry that I have to be blunt, but it's the truth!

The two parties have sold unions out, especially the Democrats! They take our money, use our membership, and then leave us high and dry! They pass no legislation to help us organize membership, protect pensions, or stand up against the CEO's and corporate attorneys. Why is this, you ask? It is simple; it's because the Democrats and Republicans are infested with CEO's, corporate consultants, and corporate attorneys. You can't be a REAL labor leader and support the Democrats and Republicans. It's a hypocritical move!  

What can we do as labor leaders who care about the movement and the future of the Philadelphia unions?  The answer is simple; we need to run OUR UNION REPS for City Council at Large and City Commissioner as Green Party Candidates.

The Green Party is a 100% pro-labor party that stands for workers to organize, pension plans, single payer healthcare, and is against NAFTA, Taft-Hartley "right to work laws", and wants to prosecute CEO's and Management that break labor laws. One of the greatest things about the Green Party is that they take NO CORPORATE PAC MONEY! It is a clean party that labor could take over and make it their own. If we make a coalition among labor unions, we would not need any corporate money; we can fund our own campaigns!

Running for City Council at Large and City Commissioner makes sense because no matter what, two "minority party" candidates for City Council at Large get appointed, and one for City Commissioner gets appointed. This historically has been Republicans, but IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE! It can be two Green Party candidates for City Council at Large and one for City Commissioner! Think about this for a second and you will say to yourself, "Why didn't I think of this." It's ok; sometimes it takes a young union brother like me to bring us back to reality!  

Attached is a statement about what we need to do to make this happen. Don't let your union brothers and sisters down! The time to act is NOW; not tomorrow. Help me and other progressive union leadership fights back and take back our city for labor.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Hugh Giordano

Union Organizer/ Representative UFCW Local 152 and Green party city committee member.  

P.S . STOP donating to the Democrats and Republicans. We need that money for our Green Party candidates!


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Ross Levin a young activist who also writes for,, He first became active in politics in the 2008 presidential campaign through Mike Gravel's quixotic run for the Democratic (more...)
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