Saturday, October 23, 2010
It's no secret that the economy--especially jobs--is the biggest factor in this year election. As further proof, just look at third-party group spending this year. As this Steven Greenhouse article shows, the two 800-pound gorillas are the Chamber of Commerce and organized labor. Just look at some of their spending:
The giant union of government workers, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is promising to spend a record $66 million this year on get-out-the-vote efforts, voter education and political advertisements. That includes $16 million that the union recently took out of an emergency fund, and it comes on top of $21 million it spent last year, mainly on state and local races. The union says it has spent $17 million on broadcast advertisements so far this year.
Reflecting a growing dispute between unions and the Chamber of Commerce, the public employees’ union is arguing that its campaign spending this year is less than the Chamber’s $75 million, even though the union has spent $87 million over the two-year election cycle.
The A.F.L.-C.I.O. plans to spend about $50 million in this year’s campaign, while the Service Employees International Union, one of the most politically active unions, plans to spend $44 million, including $14 million already spent on advertisements.
Needless to say, the Chamber will be happier on Nov. 2, but there is still a lot at stake for unions trying to minimize the damage. Another reminder of what we all try to tell everyone: employment matters matter!