Union anti-Trump rally focuses on his D.C. hotel construction site

WASHINGTON – Denouncing presumed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, and demanding that top corporate backers of this month’s GOP convention – especially Walmart – pull out, dozens of unionists spent a sweltering noon hour on July 7 in D.C. demonstrating at Trump’s downtown hotel construction site.

The rally, at the Old Post Office, which Trump is rehabbing into a luxury hotel, while underpaying his workers there, was one of four nationwide to show solidarity against the millionaire mogul and his racist, xenophobic and discriminatory statements. Other rallies, backers at the D.C. event said, were in New York, San Francisco, and Chicago.

“Stop hate! Dump Trump!” “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Donald Trump has got to go!” were among the chants from members of the Teachers, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 400, the American Federation of Government Employees, the AFL-CIO, the Painters, the Transportation Communications Union-IAM, and the Seafarers, among others.

The D.C. protesters campaigned against Trump as the businessman hit the capital city for closed-door talks with the Republican establishment, which he defied and demonized – along with workers-throughout his winning primary drive. But demonstrators also targeted Walmart. UFCW has battled that right wing anti-worker retail monster for years.

“We’re calling on Walmart to publically withdraw support for the Republican convention and condemn Mr. Trump’s bigotry,” said UFCW Local 400 activist Karina Lopez. Other leading firms, including UPS, Coca-Cola, Wells-Fargo Bank, Apple Computer, and Walgreen’s, have pulled their sponsorship of the convention, scheduled for Cleveland July 18-21, Lopez added.

The anti-Trump rallies in front of his buildings were not the only denunciations of the mogul. Prospective Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton used a now-closed Trump Taj Mahal hotel in Atlantic City, N.J., to blast Trump’s bankruptcies, which include that casino. She then met members of Unite Here Local 54, which represents the 1,000 Trump Taj Mahal workers. They had to strike July 1 against its new owner, investor and Trump backer Carl Icahn. He demands to cut their wages and kill their health care, or he’ll close the hotel for good.

Photo: A demonstrator’s sign is seen at a demonstration against Trump’s downtown D.C. hotel construction site.  |  EPA


CONTRIBUTOR

Mark Gruenberg
Mark Gruenberg

Mark Gruenberg is the editor of Press Associates Inc. (PAI), a union news service in Washington, D.C.

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