The Stand

A clear choice for workers in the 10th CD

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Doglio sides with working people; Strickland sides with corporate interests

 

By APRIL SIMS and JOE MIZRAHI


OLYMPIA (Sept. 15, 2020) — In May, union delegates gathered to vote on which congressional candidate — out of more than a dozen — for Washington’s open 10th District seat would be the best advocate for working people. Their overwhelming choice: State Representative Beth Doglio (D-Olympia), who has earned a perfect 100% voting record on labor issues during her tenure in Olympia and secured the endorsement of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO.

In August, Rep. Doglio was one of the top two vote-getters in the Primary Election so she advanced to the General Election on Nov. 3. Her opponent will be Marilyn Strickland, a former Tacoma mayor who most recently was CEO of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce business lobbying group. Although they are both Democratic candidates, voters of the 10th District will have a clear choice between Doglio, who has a record of supporting workers’ interests, and Strickland, who has a history of supporting corporate interests.

Doglio supports strong wage standards and paid family leave. She supports Washington’s higher minimum wage and wants to raise the federal minimum wage, explaining that a higher minimum wage “doesn’t crash the economy, but actually grows it.” She voted to enforce minimum wage standards at Sea-Tac Airport and voted to strengthen prevailing wage standards that ensure area-standard pay levels on Washington’s publicly funded construction projects. Doglio also voted to create Washington’s ground-breaking Paid Family and Medical Leave program that allows workers to take time off to care for ailing family members or when they welcome a new baby or child into their family.

Strickland backed weaker minimum wage and sick leave standards. As mayor of Tacoma, she attempted to appease business interests by supporting $12 minimum wage and 3-day paid sick leave ordinances — the sick leave exempted thousands of workers in the city — and she resisted efforts by workers’ advocates to strengthen those measures. Thankfully, both ordinances were quickly surpassed when voters overwhelmingly approved a statewide initiative with higher minimum wages and more sick days. As CEO of the Seattle Chamber, Strickland lamented that Seattle’s trend-setting minimum wage, sick leave, and secure scheduling ordinances were a burden for businesses.

Doglio supports the freedom to join together in unions. “I want to work to strengthen the union movement and make it easier for employees to organize,” said Doglio. She successfully sponsored legislation that allowed part-time state employees, who are disproportionately women, to gain collective bargaining rights in Washington state. “Labor law reform should have been enacted years ago by Congress to improve collective bargaining laws, increase apprenticeship opportunities, and give working people a fair shot at a decent living,” Doglio says. “I will work to make that happen in the next Congress.”

Strickland wants more free trade agreements like NAFTA. As Tacoma’s mayor, Strickland actively campaigned for passage of “fast track” authority to approve the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a business-backed free trade proposal that was aggressively opposed by labor and environmental groups. Had it passed, the TPP would have expanded the North American Free Trade Agreement’s job-killing policies worldwide. U.S. Rep. Denny Heck (D-10th), who Strickland hopes to replace in Congress, voted against the TPP.

Doglio wants to make sure corporations and wealthy CEOs pay their fair share. She says that companies like Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft — ones “that are very much profiting from this pandemic” — should pay more to support public assistance programs and other priorities, such as health care. Last year, Doglio sponsored legislation to raise taxes on high-earning CEOs and use the revenue to provide a tax break for low-income families. She also voted to tax out-of-state banks to help fund public schools and other critical state services.

Strickland has opposed taxes on Amazon and other big businesses. As CEO of the Seattle Chamber in 2018, Strickland aggressively fought to repeal a city tax that targeted Amazon and other large businesses to pay for affordable housing and homeless service programs. The following year, under her direction, the Seattle Chamber PAC spent an unprecedented $2.5 million (mostly from Amazon) to support pro-business challengers to pro-worker City Council members. After that effort failed, she resigned as CEO and announced she was running for Congress.

Doglio believes health care is a human right. She minces no words on the subject: “Health care is a human right – and one’s quality of care and access to treatment shouldn’t be determined by their ability to pay.” Doglio supports Medicare for All, creating a public single-payer system that provides health care coverage for everyone. As a legislator, Doglio co-sponsored bills to create an affordable public option for individual health insurance coverage and to create greater transparency for prescription drug costs and hold the drug companies accountable. “We need to take on Big Pharma and the out-of-control prices and CEO salaries at ‘non-profit’ hospitals,” Doglio said. “It’s time for the federal government to be able to negotiate drug prices for Medicare, for Americans to be able to import drugs from other countries, and to put an end to pharmaceutical price gouging.”

Strickland supports a more incremental approach to health care. She says she wants to make incremental improvements to the Affordable Care Act, but does not support Medicare for All.

Workers need an advocate in Congress to advance our interests, not one who tries to stall, slow or weaken progress that would make lives better. That’s why Beth Doglio has earned the endorsement of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO.


April Sims is Secretary-Treasurer of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO. Joe Mizrahi is Secretary-Treasurer of UFCW 21.

Short URL: https://www.thestand.org/?p=91338

Posted by on Sep 15 2020. Filed under OPINION. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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