Trump Marks Labor Day by Attacking the Head of the AFL-CIO

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Photo: Chuck Burton (AP)

Workers don’t really need more reminders that Donald Trump is the president of only one person: himself. And we already know his track record on labor.


But one would still hope that the president of the United States would be a little more gracious on Labor Day and refrain from attacking the president of the largest federation of labor unions in the country.

Nope. And he did it not once, but twice.

Early Monday morning, Trump tweeted an attack against AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, after Trumka appeared over the weekend on Fox News Sunday to weigh in on trade negotiations with Canada and Mexico, a topic Trumka is entirely qualified to speak on.


“Richard Trumka, the head of the AFL-CIO, represented his union poorly on television this weekend. Some of the things he said were so againt [sic] the working men and women of our country, and the success of the U.S. itself, that it is easy to see why unions are doing so poorly. A Dem!” Trump tweeted.

Hours later, he tweeted the same thing (or someone did) and deleted his initial tweet.

The second tweet came after Trump halfheartedly wished the country a happy Labor Day by bragging about himself and his nonexistent policy accomplishments.


“The Worker in America is doing better than ever before,” he wrote.

The previous day, Trumka had pointed out that Trump’s threat of booting Canada out of NAFTA—which Trump can’t even unilaterally do—isn’t a viable option.


“It’s pretty hard to see how that would work without having Canada in the deal,” Trumka told Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace.

A day earlier, Trump had tweeted: “There is no political necessity to keep Canada in the new NAFTA deal. If we don’t make a fair deal for the U.S. after decades of abuse, Canada will be out.”


Yet, while Trump claims the U.S. will forge ahead with a bilateral trade deal only with Mexico, Trumka said the U.S. is “anxious to have all three countries involved.”


“We’ve been aggressively pursuing an agreement that works for the workers in all three countries,” he said.


That could’ve been what set Trump off on Labor Day, but more likely, it was what Trumka said about Trump.

“[T]he things that he’s done to hurt workers outpace what he’s done to help workers,” Trumka said, according to the AP. Trumka reminded Wallace that the president’s long-promised infrastructure revitalization program also remains missing in action.


He added that while the unemployment rate and economic growth are positive indicators, they’re countered by rising gas prices and stagnant wages. “So, overall, workers aren’t doing as well,” he said.

That prompted Trump—who seems to use Fox News as his only source of information these days—to fire back on Monday that, “Our country is doing better than ever before with unemployment setting record lows. The U.S. has tremendous upside potential as we go about fixing some of the worst Trade Deals ever made by any country in the world. Big progress being made!”


Big progress! Happy Labor Day! 

Weekend Editor, Splinter

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