Pennsylvania Union Bosses Fight Privatization


Pennsylvania United Food and Commercial Workers union officials are opposing legislation that will privatize liquor sales in Pennsylvania. Government control of liquor has been a plum victory for union bosses.  They have given thousands in forced dues to both Republican and Democrat lawmakers to keep carrying water for forced unionism. Eric Boehm,, has the story.

The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776, which counts about 3,000 state liquor store employees among its members, is the most visible and vocal opponent of House Majority Leader Mike Turzai’s (R-Allegheny) call to privatize the state-owned liquor monopoly.

And with Gov. Tom Corbett in support of privatization and the GOP in control of both chambers of the General Assembly, the union must rely on more than just Democratic support to keep privatization proposals at bay.

A review of campaign finance records by PA Independent found the union gave more than $12,000 to Republican candidates in 2012—much of it targeted at key figures in the state House. As expected, the union gives more heavily to Democrats, who collectively received more than $40,000 in contributions.

Wendell Young IV, president of UFCW Local 1776, said Thursday that his union is not a single issue entity, but acknowledged that the privatization of the liquor stores is their top issue.

He said the union follows general guidelines published by the AFL-CIO, a conglomerate of many smaller trade unions, to determine which candidates to support.

“We look at pro-labor votes and their support of workers’ issues,” Young said. “Democrats more often score better than Republicans, but we support candidates on both sides.”