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HomeLatest NewsBiden Joins Historic UAW Strike, Supports Auto Workers on Picket Line

Biden Joins Historic UAW Strike, Supports Auto Workers on Picket Line

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President Joe Biden made an unprecedented show of support for organized labor by visiting a picket line of striking auto workers in Van Buren Township, Michigan. Wearing a union ballcap and exchanging fist bumps, Biden urged the United Auto Workers (UAW) strikers to continue their fight for better wages and expressed solidarity with their demands. Despite concerns of the strike’s impact on the economy, Biden emphasized that the workers deserved a significant raise, stating that the UAW members should be able to bargain for a 40% raise. This visit marks the first time a sitting president has joined an ongoing strike and showcases Biden’s commitment to union support.

Biden’s visit to the picket line at the General Motors parts distribution warehouse lasted for less than half an hour. He was accompanied by UAW President Shawn Fain, who praised the president for standing up with the workers in their “generation-defining moment.” Labor historians noted that no previous sitting president had taken part in an ongoing strike, even during the presidencies of pro-union leaders such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Harry Truman. This visit acts as a significant demonstration of Biden’s support for unions, as he has previously voiced support for unionization efforts at Amazon and implemented executive actions promoting worker organizing. While Trump dismissed Biden’s visit as a PR stunt, Biden’s show of solidarity resonated with the workers on the picket line.

Biden has been actively promoting his pro-labor credentials in crucial swing states, such as Michigan and Pennsylvania, where unions hold significant influence. His union support comes at a time when labor unions have broad support from the public, as seen in an August Gallup poll where 67% of Americans approved of labor unions. However, the UAW strike remains a challenge for the Biden administration, particularly concerning the workers’ concerns about the shift to electric vehicles and potential job losses in the industry. Despite differing views on other political issues, many workers at the picket line expressed their belief that Biden would be better for the middle class compared to Trump. The visit also highlights Biden’s willingness to challenge traditional presidential behavior and seek direct engagement with workers and unions.

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