American Federation of Musicians Local 47 Endorses Bernie Sanders for President

Los Angeles musicians union makes historic move by taking position in 2020 Democratic Primary

LOS ANGELES, CA (Feb. 12, 2020) – The American Federation of Musicians Local 47 is proud to endorse Bernie Sanders for President of the United States in the 2020 Primary Election.

Members of the Los Angeles musicians union’s political action committee voted unanimously to recommend that the AFM Local 47 executive board – the elected leadership body of the 7,000-member union – endorse Sen. Sanders as the candidate who best represents the interests of musicians. On Tuesday, the board in turn voted unanimously to endorse Sanders in an unprecedented move for a union historically removed from taking official stances in presidential elections.

“Today more than ever, unions and workers are under attack by exploitative forces that are eroding our middle class. Immediate action and activism is crucial,” said AFM Local 47 President John Acosta. “Bernie Sanders is the best presidential candidate to defend musicians and all workers by protecting jobs and workers’ rights.”

AFM Local 47 is the first musicians union in the country to take a position in the 2020 Democratic Primary. The decision to support Sen. Sanders arrived from a member-driven process in which AFM Local 47 musicians organized a political forum to hear from and speak directly with senior campaign officials. Musicians found Sanders to be the candidate best able to champion the priorities and values of the musicians union:

  • Protecting Pensions: Sanders has committed to halt further cuts to workers’ pensions and to make whole those workers whose pension benefits have been cut, while working toward a long-term solution to restore troubled pension plans to solvency.
  • Union Support: Sanders has supported working people throughout his career, which has garnered him the most union endorsements of all candidates, and Local 47 is proud to join some of our closest allies with its support.
  • Tax Credit Accountability: Sanders supports our calls to ensure that tax credit dollars are promoting good jobs for musicians in the U.S., not allowing taxpayer-subsidized music jobs to be sent overseas.
  • Labor Rights/Worker Power: Sanders has committed to doubling union membership, allowing sectoral bargaining, requiring worker representation on corporate boards, and repealing harmful provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act.

Additionally, Sanders’ strong and unwavering support of union workers throughout his political career and his ambitious plan for strengthening labor power throughout the nation fully aligns with AFM Local 47’s commitment to building a national movement for real and lasting change.

The Los Angeles musicians union joins a long list of union support for the Sanders campaign, including AFT Local 1931, AFT Vermont, American Postal Workers Union (APWU), Boston Independent Drivers Guild (BIDG), Clark County Education Association (CCEA), Inlandboatmen’s Union (IBU), International Longshore Workers Union (ILWU) Local 12, National Nurses United (NNU), National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW), New Hampshire American Postal Workers Union (APWU), Oakland Education Association (OEA), SEA/SEIU Local 1984, United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE), UNITE HERE Locals 2, 11, 23, 30, 49, 483 and 2850, United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), United Teachers of Richmond (UTR), and the University Professional and Technical Employees (UPTE-CWA 9119).

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