#MoralMondays: The SEIU Factor

This morning I was reviewing the arrest reports from the June 3rd meltdown and came across two out of towners in the arrest list. These two hail from NYC. Quite a long way away from home.

Interesting to note the out of town union factor:

Estela Vasquez– She’s from NYC, NY and employer is LABOR UNION. (Update: The Link to Wake Cty Sheriff report no longer works. Screenshot here.) Specifically the SEIU 1199.  She’s tied to healthcare as the Executive Director of United Healthcare Workers East.  Estela is a fan of Occupy:

Estela Vasquez, Exec VP 1199 SEIU #J15 #OWS #OccupyTheDream twitpic.com/87tnp0

— Liza Sabater (@blogdiva) January 16, 2012

George Gresham — He’s from NYC, NC and employer is HEALTHCARE UNION. (Update: The Link to Wake Cty Sheriff report no longer works. Screenshot here.) In fact, he and Estela know each other and are both in SEIU 1199. George is the President of 1199 and was arrested at Occupy in NY.  Reverend Barber and Gresham are also quite friendly.  They even teamed up in 2011 to protest the Koch Brothers in NY, because apparently voter ID is racist and somehow it’s all Koch’s fault.  Barber also spoke in NY at the SEIU delegates assembly in 2012:

Rev. Barber brought the delegates to their feet time and again as he described what was at stake in this year’s elections and what the labor movement and its allies need to do to ensure that their interest and concerns are not ignored. He often quoted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to make his points.

“Labor and civil rights are two movements traveling in the same direction,” Rev. Barber said, paraphrasing Dr. King. He talked about the need to revive the fusion politics that made the Reconstruction period in the South one of the nation’s greatest eras. “Leaders in that period recognized that everyone, regardless of race, has a right to enjoy the fruits of their labor.”

Rev. Barber drew loud cheers when he enumerated contributions of the labor movement that many now take for granted. “If you like Sundays off and paid vacations, thank the labor movement,” he roared. He left the stage to thunderous applause.

1199 Secretary Treasurer Maria Castaneda, who has been working the past month with the Weekend Warriors in Pennsylvania, reviewed the accomplishment of the volunteer electioneering program. “We have knocked on 52,000 doors and have gotten 13,000 pledges to vote for President Obama,” Castaneda said. “We’ve also registered 800 new voters.”

The Daily Haymaker is already on the case. I was pleased someone else was pointing out that SEANC has been taken over by the SEIU.:

SEIU owns North Carolina’s State Employees Association (SEANC).  SEANC members will tell you — with a straight face — that they are an association, not a union.  Never mind that their web site touts the group as SEIU Local 2008.

Lately, our state’s stupid, gullible, and mostly corrupt mainstream media have been gushing over these so-called  ”Moral Monday” protests at the legislative building in Raleigh.  We’ve been subjected to puff pieces trying to portray the protesters — hauled off to jail for disturbing the peace and trespassing — as frustrated taxpayers who are not much different than those Tea Party folks.

But NC NAACP president Bill Barber — aka “The Round Rev” — may have spilled the beans.  Barber has been the front man for these “Moral Monday” protests aimed at halting such atrocities as letting working people keep more of their money, letting parents have more input into their children’s education, and forcing government to live within its means.  Barber’s group issued a release about their latest ruckus on Jones Street:

[…] A crowd of roughly 1,600 people – including more than 100 who were arrested and jailed – gathered at the North Carolina General Assembly for a mass pray-in, sing-in and teach-in against the extreme agenda of the state leadership. The multiracial group of clergy members, representatives from SEIU District 1199, college students, seniors, doctors, nurses and others are participating in the fifth recurring “Moral Monday” protest to oppose and expose an avalanche of regressive bills from the legislature. […]

SCREEEEEEEECHHHH.   Wha ….????  The State Employees Association is SEIU 2008.  Who is SEIU 1199?  Well, those folks are from the New York City area and surrounding states.  Carpetbaggers.  Astroturfers. 

Indeed. The swell in numbers from a few hundred to over an estimated 1,000 would seem to indicate the SEIU brought their own movable protest yet again. Gee, it looks like McCrory was right. There’s that ‘out of town influence’ that Democratic Rapid Response’s Ben Ray complained about:

McCrory warned that outside groups were helping stir up trouble.

“Outsiders are coming in and they’re going to try to do to us what they did to Scott Walker in Wisconsin,” he said referring to that state’s governor. Walker and Republican legislators in Wisconsin passed a contentious law in 2011 that stripped most state workers’ collective bargaining rights. The law sparked massive protests at the state Capitol that generated national publicity for Walker. “They are going to come in and try to change the subject. And I’m not going to let them. I’m going to concentrate on the economy, education and government efficiency.”

Ben Ray, the state Democratic Party’s rapid response director, criticized McCrory’s comments.

“Gov. McCrory’s attitude is everything wrong with Raleigh. He’s joined Phil Berger and Thom Tillis to reject health care for 500,000 North Carolinians and is embracing a deeply unpopular legislature that works for special interests, not North Carolina families,” he said.

He added that it was hypocritical for McCrory to say outside groups were targeting North Carolina.

“Pat McCrory had more than $5 million spent on his behalf by outside groups in 2012. Accusing North Carolinians opposed to his special interest-driven agenda of being outsiders is rank hypocrisy,” he said. (ABC 11)

Indeed. Hypocritical that Democrats only complain about outside money when they are not the ones receiving it. Don’t worry, Mr. Ray — the Democrats are not being left out. Kay Hagan is likely getting a lot of outside money, although it is hard to tell since she’s using the donor obscuring ACT BLUE to raise her money.  Let’s not forget one of her bigger donors last cycle was MoveOn.org.

Update: I have a source who was in the location of the June 3rd rally. They reported to me two buses from NYC and one from NJ were there.  For those of you who don’t want to believe that, go read the Daily Haymaker who provides additional confirmation.

UPDATE 6/13:

Also spotted this one:

About A.P. Dillon

A.P. Dillon is a reporter currently writing at The North State Journal. She resides in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_ Tips: APDillon@Protonmail.com
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