AFL-CIO Sends Mailers to 10 Million Union Households

Posted October 25, 2010 at 12:26pm

As candidates and party leaders focus on get-out-the-vote efforts across the nation, the massive AFL-CIO labor union is stuffing 10 million fliers into voters’ mailboxes from Providence, R.I., to Fresno, Calif., in an attempt to spark a sense of urgency about Election Day.

The microtargeted mailers, which are labeled “Your official union ballot,” show voters every candidate AFL-CIO endorsed in their state. The slate cards are targeted locally so each voter sees their district’s Congressional and state legislative candidates. Some mailers include positions on state ballot measures. The AFL-CIO is staying neutral on California’s Proposition 19, which would legalize the recreational use of marijuana in the state.

“People like you who vote can keep our economy moving forward. After all we’ve been through, we can’t risk going back,” the mailers tell union households, pointing them toward their polling places and urging members to vote next week.

Joining the flier in union families’ mailboxes will be a personalized letter from Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO president.

“My message is simple. As bad as things are they can get a whole lot worse,” Trumka writes. “And it is up to you, me and every union member to make sure they don’t succeed,”

“On Tuesday, get mad, and do something about it. Stand up for a fair break for working families. Go to the polls and vote,” the letter states.

There’s also a second letter saying voters should get to the polls because outside corporate interests are trying to influence the elections.

A top AFL-CIO official said the mailers were sent using the “most sophisticated” GOTV program the union has ever done. The union has sent 28.6 million pieces of mail during the midterm election cycle.