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Since its inception, since we got here as a nation, America has been about the right to allow its citizens to pick and choose our best and most qualified people for public office.

By Ray Curry Vote! I cannot say it any simpler or say it enough. Vote to restore government for the people, by the people; vote to preserve our threatened middle class; vote for America’s workers by voting for an America that works; vote up and down the ballot and vote union blue.

As delegates gather online for this year’s historic Democratic National Convention, UAW Vice President Cindy Estrada says this online-only convention is key to success in November, especially for women.

Leadership matters, especially when working families are struggling with the worst public health crisis in a century, which has spurred the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

For UAW members and their families, the 2020 election comes at a time of great uncertainty about the economy, retirement, health care and a way forward to guide the nation out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Just after sunset on a resurgent Detroit, UAW Secretary-Treasurer Ray Curry and U.S. Senator Gary Peters called the Michigan roll for Joe Biden at the 2020 Democratic National Convention live from Belle Isle’s Sunset Point. Secretary-Treasurer Curry said it was a high honor for working families and the UAW because of Biden's long track record of support for labor.

UAW Vice President Gerald Kariem, who directs the union’s National Ford Department, sees the Biden-Harris ticket as a change for the country to get back to steady, measured and effective leadership. “We need folks with a steady hand, empathy and intelligence to be able to do that job,” Kariem said. “This current health care and economic crisis that has been caused by Covid-19 has shifted us into a new way of living. We need strong leadership that guides us, not confuses us.” For Kariem, both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have the kind of upbringing that relates to the needs of working families. In fact, Kariem noted that both have a long history of being on the correct side of issues that are particularly important to UAW members. “The most important thing UAW members should know is that a Biden-Harris ticket will be sensitive to the needs of working families,” he said. “Joe Biden has been in solidarity with the UAW for decades.” However, Kariem stressed the importance of UAW members participating in the process and voting. “Nothing concerns me more than people who don’t take advantage of their opportunity to vote,” Kariem said, adding that he understands why people would have doubts about the importance of voting given the doubts and confusion sown by those who want to keep people from the polls. “We have to help our members, their families and our friends understand what the candidates stand for and how they will help UAW members, working Americans and their families. That has always been a strong part of the UAW’s mission,” Kariem said. It’s a cliché to say that this is the most important election of our lifetimes, but Kariem says what makes this election important is the constant turmoil the nation has been experiencing in recent years. “I would like to double down on that statement and say this is the most important election in the history of this country,” he said. “We are looking to find a less confusing and less chaotic society, as well as less chaotic political discourse.” With Biden winning the nomination and his selection of Harris as his running mate, Kariem said he sees hope for UAW members and America on the horizon.
The Democratic National Convention’s first day focused on three major issues -- the pandemic, the resulting economic crisis and the racial justice crisis. A diverse lineup of speakers and guests including former First Lady Michele Obama, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, among others -- including many Republicans, front line workers and members of George Floyd’s family -- urged voters of all political persuasions to elect the ticket that will stand up for UAW members and their families while rebuilding America.

This month marks the 55th anniversary of the passage of the Voting Rights Act (VRA), one of the most powerful pieces of civil rights legislation in our history. The passage of the VRA into law was the result of decades of struggle and sacrifice and was truly a shining moment in our history.

Unfortunately, the struggle to ensure that all Americans have the right and opportunity to vote not only continues today, we have actually suffered significant losses on this front over the past decade.

Aug. 16, 2020 Sisters and Brothers: For UAW members this year's election is about how we rise to the challenges of tremendous changes we can expect over the next four years. The notion of living through a pandemic was something that I doubt any of us ever thought we would experience. We took our national health and many of our freedoms for granted.
Open Letter in Regard to GM: I am not a spokesman for anyone other than myself and the words in this opinion piece are mine and they pertain specifically and solely to me. Since retiring on July 1, 2010, I have avoided speaking to the media. I read with disgust and dismay some newspaper articles pertaining to me yesterday. I do not blame the reporters. They were covering a story based on statements taken from General Motors’ Motion to Alter or Amend Judgment against Fiat Chrysler and others, dated August 3, 2020. I do, however, place the blame squarely on GM for their malicious and utterly baseless attack against me and a supposed “unnamed” member of my family.