AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka & Sarah Palin Trade Barbs & Tweets


Palin, AFL-CIO chief spar over speech
Jordan Fabian | The Hill

From the Hill:

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) hit back at AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Thursday for calling her rhetoric “poisonous.”

Trumka went to Anchorage, Alaska — Palin’s political backyard — to deliver a speech in which he is expected to criticize Palin’s language, which he says could incite violence from her supporters.

“And down in Tyler, Texas, she’s talking about — and I quote — ‘union thugs.’ What? Her husband’s a union man. Is she calling him a thug? Sarah Palin ought to know what union men and women are,” Trumka will say. “That’s poisonous. There’s history behind that rhetoric. That’s how bosses and politicians in decades past justified the terrorizing of workers, the murdering of organizers.”

Palin responded on her widely-followed Twitter account, saying:

Know our hardworking union friends (esp from my days as an IBEW sister, Todd IBEW & USW brother) aren’t sheep, they’ll ask: Trumka’s motive?
Think Trumka’s frustrations r w/Obama, not me (high unemplymnt, deals w/Obama & his subsequent broken promises)so understandable Rich’s ticked

AFL-CIO spokesman Eddie Vale quickly fired back, saying that she undermined her message by resigning as governor last year.

“Basically, she’s having a temper tantrum, putting her hands over her ears and yelling ‘la la la la la, I can’t hear you’ ” Vale said. “Because if she had actually read the speech the motivation and message are crystal clear. She left working families in Alaska behind when she tried to trade up to Fox News and the Tea Party. We understand that she wants to keep up her faux populism and image as caring about ordinary people but her actions, policies and candidates she supports speak way louder than her tweets.”

UPDATE (from CBS News): Trumka compares Palin to McCarthy

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka is calling Sarah Palin “almost a parody of herself” who will “go down in history like McCarthy” in a speech in Alaska today.

When it comes to Palin, he plans to say, according to prepared remarks released this morning, “you just have to laugh — but it’s not really funny.”

“In this charged political environment, her kind of talk gets dangerous,” Trumka will say at the Alaska AFL-CIO Biennial Convention. “‘Don’t retreat… reload’ may seem clever, the kind of bull you hear all the time, but put it in context. She’s using crosshairs to illustrate targeted legislators. She’s on the wrong side of the line there. She’s getting close to calling for violence. And some of her fans take that stuff seriously. We’ve got legislators in America who have been living with death threats since the health care votes.”

Editor’s note:  Clearly Trumka’s worried about the “Mama Grizzly’s” impact on the mid-term elections.  However, given Richard ‘the Fifth’ Trumka’s history as well as his typically ‘thuggish’ behavior, his remarks don’t carry much weight but the jab back and forth and Eddie Vale’s childish response are amusing nonetheless.


“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.”  Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776

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