Strickland, Local UAW Criticize GOP For Not Supporting Auto Rescue Loans
Perrysburg, OH – Former Governor Ted Strickland took the stage at the Democratic National Convention Tuesday night, where he criticized Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney for opposing the 2009 automotive rescue loans.
“Mitt Romney proudly wrote an op-ed article, ‘Let Detroit Go Bankrupt,’” Strickland said. “If he had had his way, devastation would have cascaded from Michigan to Ohio and across the nation.”
In his speech, Strickland also shared the stories of workers whose jobs were saved from the auto rescue, including Northwest Ohio residents Ina Sidney of Perrysburg and James Fayson of Toledo.
The automotive industry has become a key focus of this year’s election, especially in Ohio – a swing state where one in eight jobs is based in the auto industry.
Here in Northwest Ohio, members of United Auto Workers Local 211 are making their own appeal to voters in the newly competitive Fifth U.S. Congressional District: Representative Bob Latta failed to support the auto industry, and they want him out of Congress.
In an online ad released by the Angela Zimmann campaign Friday, employees at the Defiance General Motors Powertrain plant criticized Rep. Latta for voting against the 2009 auto rescue loans, which saved GM and Chrysler from bankruptcy.
“The auto industry means a lot to my family, my kids. When Bob Latta voted against it, he was voting against my family,” said Chad Cattell, an employee at Defiance GM Powertrain.
The Defiance GM Powertrain plant, which first opened in 1948, is one of the largest employers in Defiance County, employing over 1,200 employees.
According to Greg Nartker, who also works at Defiance GM Powertrain, Latta’s vote against the auto loans “was a slap in the face to all union members across the state.
Zimmann, an engineer and a union member, is an active union supporter and has received numerous endorsements from local and national labor organizations, including UAW Region 2-B.
On Monday, Zimmann lead the annual Toledo Labor Day parade alongside Senator Sherrod Brown and Representative Marcy Kaptur. The parade, which brought an estimated 10,000 participants, featured more than 40 local unions.
This year’s parade is the first since the overwhelming rejection of Republican Governor John Kasich’s union-busting Senate Bill 5 last November. The measure was voted down by 62 percent of voters in Ohio’s Fifth District, a slightly higher percentage than all Ohio voters.
Union members, supporters, and their families showed at Monday’s parade that they are still energized and politically engaged by sporting campaign stickers, buttons, banners, and signs for several Democratic candidates, including Angela Zimmann.Download Press Release