The nation's desperate economic situation has cost Democrats their largest majorities in recent memory. Richard Trumka tried to warn them.
"If you go back two, three years ago, I was screaming, 'It's about jobs! it's about jobs!' and everyone was going--" Trumka pretends to yawn.
For the AFL-CIO president, this election was a particularly tough one. Not only is the American working class suffering through the worst economic strife since the Great Depression, but President Obama, whom Trumka worked to elect, has seen his approval ratings plummet among Trumka's own constituency: working-class white voters. Trumka blames Tuesday night's results on the economy--and not much else.
"This is a bad economy for working people, and they took it out on everybody who was in office," Trumka said Wednesday during a meeting with reporters and editors at National Journal. "And, quite frankly, if they don't make it better in two years, they'll do it again, and we'll probably be helping them do it."
Obama's troubles, Trumka said, have something--but certainly not everything--to do with how the president delivered the economic message.
"I think at times the president stepped on his message when he would talk about job creation and deficit reduction and failing to distinguishing between the two, and it confused things" the AFL-CIO president said.