The Tom Barrett campaign has rolled out its own new set of union endorsements in the Wisconsin gubernatorial recall, as the state heads toward the Democratic primary on May 8.
The Barrett campaign announced the support of the statewide Amalgamated Transit Union, Operating Engineers Local 317, and the Iron Workers District Council of North Central States. On a conference call with reporters Thursday afternoon, Iron Workers president Collin Millard said that Barrett is the best candidate for Democrats, to overcome Gov. Scott Walker's fundraising advantages in the election, and that he has worked fairly with unions.
"And when I talk to my members, they tell me they regret not voting for Barrett, the ones that voted for Scott Walker," said Millard, referring to when Barrett was previously the Democratic nominee for governor in 2010, saying he was glad "to be in the position to give them a second chance, to vote for Tom Barrett." (He later clarified that most of his members did indeed vote for Barrett in 2010.)
Most organized labor support has gone to former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, such as AFSCME, the teachers union WEAC, SEIU, and the statewide AFL-CIO. In addition, the public employees have feuded with Barrett over city issues in Milwaukee, where he is the mayor.