The Campaign Spot

Is That Glenn and Bill I Hear?

This anecdote strikes me as pretty revealing:

“When our canvassers call on our members on their doorsteps, they hear Glenn Beck or Bill O’Reilly in the background,” says Dan Heck, who heads a massive union-sponsored program in Ohio devoted to persuading its members to vote this November for candidates who would mightily displease Beck and O’Reilly.

Heck’s organization, Working America, was created by the national AFL-CIO in 2004 to reach out to white, working-class voters in key swing states such as Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania. “Right now, we talk to 25,000 people every week,” says Karen Nussbaum, the program’s national director, “and we’ll knock on a million doors in the next two months. The people we talk to are the volatile 40 percent in the middle of the electorate. They’re angry, and they’re not sure who to blame or what to do about it.”

Perhaps the AFL-CIO can override what their members are hearing from Beck, O’Reilly, and the rest. But I would note that most of them had to join a union to work in the jobs they did (Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Michigan are not “right to work” states); they’re voluntarily watching Fox News Channel.


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