'The Mitch Who Stole Christmas'

Tuesday, December 16, 2008 General News J E 4
OAKLAND, Calif., Dec. 16 The nation's largest union ofregistered nurses today announced a new online and advocacy campaign targetingRepublican Senator Mitch McConnell for his Grinch-like efforts to block abailout for the auto industry unless unionized auto workers accept devastatingand punitive cuts in wages and healthcare coverage for their families.

It invites people to send a message to McConnell, and sign up for publicprotests and other actions to protect American working families.

"The Mitch tried to steal Christmas from auto workers, their families, andtheir communities. It was the auto workers today, but tomorrow it will beother working people's wages and benefits," said Geri Jenkins, RN, aco-president of the California Nurses Association/National Nurses OrganizingCommittee -- composed of 85,000 nurses in all 50 states.

"Wall Street CEOs like Martin Sullivan of AIG get their bailouts with nostrings attached. Sullivan earned $21,000 an HOUR last year, while Americanworkers and families are facing economic calamity. Yet, Sen. McConnell andsome of his Republican colleagues want to place further hardships on workingpeople and their families, after eight years of devastating erosion of livingconditions and health security."

Further, notes CNA/NNOC Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro, McConnell andcompany have made clear that they view the demands for massive concessions bythe UAW as just a first step in an all-out attack on unions and union members.An e-mail message circulated among Senate Republicans declared that denyingthe auto industry a loan was an opportunity for Republicans to "take theirfirst shot against organized labor."

"The voices of labor will not be silenced. Not about our jobs, ourhealthcare, our respect, our dignity. Senate Republican Leader MitchMcConnell's shameful attacks on organized labor will not be ignored," saidDeMoro.

"Years of eroding living standards and health security for Americanworkers are apparently not enough for McConnell. These types of attacks onthe working people who built this country are disgraceful all year butespecially during the holidays. And, not surprisingly, his actions directlyled to at least temporary layoffs for thousands of workers. Sen. McConnellcan now add another title to his resume: The Mitch Who Stole Christmas.

"Please join us in our fight to save these jobs and these families. Goonline to send a message to the Mitch. Tell him to either find some Christmascheer or a new line of work," DeMoro said.

CNA/NNOC is the nation's largest RN union and professional associationwith 85,000 members in all 50 states.(Photo: The campaign can be found HERE, (

SOURCE California Nurses Association


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