Trade union organizations affiliated to Public Services International (PSI) in the United States celebrated the confirmation of the electoral triumph of the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and the candidate for Vice President Kamala Harris and the defeat of the candidate for re-election Donald Trump.
In statements published on their websites and on social media, American organizations highlighted that the future Biden-Harris administration will adopt a more pro-worker agenda and act more strongly against the COVID-19 pandemic, among other points.
It is also important to note that the defeat of Donald Trump is being widely celebrated by progressives around the world, as it means a heavy blow to the far-right forces globally.
See the statements from PSI affiliates below:
American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE)
American Federation of Government Employees National President Everett Kelley today issued the following statement:
“Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ historic victory in this election is a testament to the unprecedented number of Americans who voted for unity over division and are ready to face the many challenges ahead of us together, as one nation, with dignity and justice for all.
“The Biden-Harris administration is committed to building our country back better and overcoming our greatest obstacles – starting with the coronavirus pandemic, which has killed more than 230,000 of our fellow Americans and crippled our economy. As the largest union representing federal and D.C. government workers, AFGE looks forward to working with the incoming administration to tackle these challenges and restore the public’s faith in the apolitical civil service.”
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
After Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were declared the next president and vice president, AFSCME President Lee Saunders issued the following statement:
“During one of the most difficult moments in our nation’s history, Americans have come together to elect two fearless fighters for working people, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, to be our president and vice president.
“The people have spoken through legitimate democratic processes. It is time for our country to unite around the will of the voters, to rally around an administration that is ready to fund the front lines and get to work defeating COVID-19.
“Even with the outcome of the election now known, it is critical that every single vote be counted, because every American deserves to have their voice heard through legitimate democratic processes. We will remain vigilant in the face of the Trump campaign’s shameful, anti-democratic efforts to silence people who have cast their ballots.
“This victory is especially meaningful for public service workers who have fought day after grueling day against a raging virus. AFSCME members have shown extraordinary strength and courage: treating patients, taking care of our kids, picking up trash, fixing the roads, doing everything in our power to keep our communities safe and strong. We fought for the funding we needed to do our essential work. And when that funding did not pass, putting our jobs at risk at the worst possible time, we mobilized in overwhelming numbers to defeat those who stood in the way.
“And come January 20, we will have a White House that honors our work, respects our sacrifice and fights for the aid to states, cities and towns that we need. We will also retain a pro-worker U.S. House of Representatives. And with control of the U.S. Senate still up for grabs, AFSCME will be flexing our political muscle and making our voices heard over the next two months in Georgia’s two Senate runoff elections.
“It is time to heal the nation, to empower working people, to tackle deep-seated inequalities and finally fund the front lines – so we can build back our communities better than before.”
American Federation of Teachers (AFT)
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement in response to a projected 2020 presidential election victory for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris:
“On behalf of the 1.7 million members of the AFT, our officers and our staff, we congratulate Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on securing enough electoral votes to win the presidency and vice presidency. Joe and Kamala have vowed to repair our country’s deep pain and division and will govern tirelessly for all of us.
“Today, America resumes the hard work of creating a more perfect union that helps everyone thrive, led by an effective, ethical and empathetic administration elected by more voters than any ticket in history. Under immense pressure, our democracy worked. The American people had their voices heard and their votes counted, and their will was clear and decisive.
“Joe Biden is a person of great decency, strength, knowledge and compassion. He will deliver on his promise to make things better for those who struggle and strive, those who educate our children and care for our patients and our communities. He and Kamala will confront America’s crises and fight for the promise of a better future.
“We look forward to working closely with an administration that will embrace and fight for the values we hold dear: justice and opportunity for all; strengthened public schools that work for all kids; economic security, starting with decent wages, good jobs and the right to a union; a belief in truth and science; and universal access to healthcare and college. We can’t wait to get started.”
International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT)
Local election officials are continuing to do the very important work of counting every vote so that the intention of every American voter is heard in this election. But even as that process moves forward in several states, it has become clear that former Vice President Joe Biden will be the next President of the United States.
The Teamsters want to congratulate President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris for their hard-fought victory. This union endorsed it because the Biden-Harris campaign put forward a bold pro-worker agenda that will enhance the ability of hardworking Americans to join together and collectively bargain for better pay and working conditions. They also will prioritize pension reform to boost workers and retirees and will do more to protect the more than one million essential Teamsters on the job during this coronavirus pandemic.
“It is vital that every voter is heard in this campaign, and that is being done,” General President Jim Hoffa said. “Our union worked hard to elect candidates that will stand with working families. We look forward to working with President-elect Biden to make our nation a better place for all working Americans.”
Though the election was contentious and hard-fought, now is the time to come together to ensure that our nation moves forward on a path that ensures workers are protected on the job and earn the wages, benefits and retirement security that they deserve.
National Nurses United (NNU)
In the following statement, National Nurses United (NNU)—the nation’s largest union of registered nurses—extends official congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on winning the 2020 presidential election:
As nurses, we never give up on our patients, and to make sure their voices are heard, we never give up on the democratic process. We are so proud to know that after the votes were tallied, our endorsed candidates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be the next president and vice president, respectively.
The work of nurses, in alliance with the work of the progressive movement, including our allies in labor, racial justice, environmental justice, and other community activists was decisive in achieving this victory. It is a big win for public health and safety, for science, for union organizing, and collective bargaining rights.
Biden has committed to a thoughtful and comprehensive response to the pandemic from the federal government, pledging to fully invoke the Defense Production Act to mass produce personal protective equipment (PPE). He has also endorsed NNU’s call for an emergency federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration standard to protect workers’ safety during pandemics. As members of a women-dominated profession and union, NNU nurses are especially proud to know that we will have our first woman, and first Black and Southeast Asian American vice president in Harris.
Of course, there is still work to be done, as we round the 10 million mark for Covid-19 infections in the United States. We cannot forget that right now, people in the United States are dying, children and families don’t have food. So nurses are not going to wait until January 20 to escalate a massive campaign on strong, effective safety measures in our communities, our hospitals, and across the country.
The voice of nurses and our allies will remain important. We look forward to working closely with our new president and vice president on the road forward.
Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
Service Employee International Union (SEIU) President Mary Kay Henry released the following statement on the historic election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris:
“Working people won this election. Essential workers, Black and brown communities, and a strong majority of voters powerfully and decisively defeated Donald Trump’s division and hate. We chose a resilient, inclusive America. We chose — with the most votes for a presidential ticket ever — Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.
“By voting in record numbers, essential workers — Black, Latino, Asian and Pacific Islander, white — delivered this historic victory. All of us — no matter our race or where we come from — want the same thing: a better future for our families. Essential workers have risked their lives to keep our country running, working through a pandemic, protecting our democracy and turning out their communities to vote in record numbers. Essential workers’ message is clear: respect us, protect us, pay us.
“It is time to transform America’s economy and our politics by valuing working people and our communities. We know it won’t be easy and we face challenges. But we still expect bold, decisive action in the first 100 days on the Biden-Harris administration and from Democrats in Congress. We will fight for a $15 an hour federal minimum wage so all workers can support our families. We will fight for the chance to join a union no matter where we work, to bargain for better jobs and build stronger communities. We want a reimagined care economy and a rational plan to deal with the pandemic. We will fight for racial justice rooted in our communities, a path to citizenship for our immigrant neighbors, healthcare for all and immediate action on climate change.
“Today, the two million service and care workers in the Service Employees International Union and the millions more in the Fight for $15 and a Union are celebrating. We congratulate President-elect Biden, who has dedicated his career to fighting for workers and modeling strong, empathetic leadership. And we congratulate and honor Vice President-elect Harris as she continues to break boundaries and pave the way for so many women and girls as the first Black, South Asian woman elected on a presidential ticket.
“Tomorrow, we will be back in the fight to win justice for all and chart a new path forward for America. In this moment of reckoning, it’s time to disrupt and uproot the deadly impacts of structural racism in America’s economy and democracy. We must face this pandemic, the economic insecurity of too many families and demands for an end to police violence head-on. We’ll be in the streets, organizing our communities, and marching together to continue the fight to ensure our economy and democracy works for all of us, no exceptions. We are ready.”