The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Tyler Prell, 202-701-5796

A Victory for Working People Everywhere


Mary Kay Henry, President of the 2.1 million member Service Employees International Union (SEIU) released the following statement after the re-election of President Barack Obama tonight:

"By re-electing President Barack Obama tonight to lead our country, working people voted for a vibrant middle class fueled by good jobs, where everyone has a fair shot at the American Dream. Voters rejected the notion that the rich should be allowed to run roughshod over our economy with shameful tax breaks and let off the hook by not investing in America. In states like New Hampshire, Ohio and Nevada working people rejected Mitt Romney's 'your on your own' vision and embraced a country where our deeds are guided by the core American value that 'we're all in this together."

"President Barack Obama's re-election tonight is a victory for working people, whose voices were heard despite some of the most coordinated and insidious obstacles to their participation in our democracy in history. When the right wing flooded our electoral process with obscene amounts of money, working people mobilized to energize voters around a better vision for America. When extremist state legislators tried to suppress the votes of broad swaths of Americans, working people responded by standing up for their constitutional right to cast their votes. When Mitt Romney and the Republican Party sought to dismiss entire communities, voters in states like Nevada responded loud and clear: 'Ignore us at your own peril.'

"Our union, including the more than 100,000 SEIU members who were on the ground during this campaign, made history as we stood with President Barack Obama - the most volunteers in SEIU history, knocking on millions of doors and making millions of phone calls to talk about the critically important issues at stake. We are also incredibly proud of our early and sustained work in the Latino and African American communities, which was ultimately critical in tonight's outcome.

"Together, we were galvanized by our belief that President Obama is the leader we need to help get our country on track by creating good jobs now, requiring the rich and corporations to pay their fair share, to invest in healthcare, education and other vital services and by creating a pathway to citizenship for immigrants.

"Our hard work paid off - but it's not over. We will stay in the streets until our agenda for working people is a reality."

With 2 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers--not just corporations and CEOs--benefit from today's global economy.