As a former political scientist (yes, yes, after years of recovery I can finally say it in public that I voluntarily studied politics, which all of us now strive to avoid, but can’t because any time you turn on the radio, television or happen to glance at a newspaper, presidential candidates are shrieking out at you to vote for him or her or somebody other than that [insert evil opponent of choice]), one would think that I would be writing about the big news of yesterday: The Teamsters just endorsed Barack Obama.
While the political pundits are running around talking about how this is just another nail in the coffin of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, I have two words for them: Dick Gephardt.
Yes, I am just that nerdy and I can tell you that in 2003 the same union endorsed Gephardt and we all know how well that campaign went.
So, right now I’m neither impressed nor unimpressed and it hasn’t affected my decision on how to vote anyway. (Of course, I live in a late primary state, so presidential nominations are always finished by the time I hit the voting booth. I vote anyway—free “I voted” sticker and warm fuzzy feelings.)
More interesting on what should be a Teamsters front is an IRS ruling:
Just before Christmas, package-delivery company FedEx was slammed with a $319 million tax bill. The Internal Revenue Service ruled the company had misclassified about 13,000 drivers as independent contractors when, the IRS said, they really were employees.
Delivery Drivers could easily fall under the Teamsters, but they don’t because they aren’t unionized. And it’s difficult to be unionized when you aren’t even an employee of a company. But, here’s the IRS saying “if it acts like an employee and looks like an employee then it is an employee and the employer better darn well be paying their taxes.”
FedEx, of course, will appeal, but somehow I think this will have a bigger impact on Truck Drivers’ lives then will the Teamster’s endorsement of any particular presidential candidate.