The largest federal employee union endorsed Hillary Clinton on Thursday, saying the former secretary of State would be a “strong advocate” for government workers.
The American Federation of Government Employees’ national executive council voted to endorse Clinton over her chief opponent, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. The union met with both Clinton and Sanders last month. It also reached out to Republican candidates, the group said, but none of the campaigns responded.
“Secretary Clinton shares AFGE’s vision for a strong and vibrant government workforce that has the necessary tools and support needed to deliver vital programs and services to the American public,” said J. David Cox, the union's national president. “The American people count on government employees to keep their streets safe, deliver their Social Security checks on time and care for our nation’s heroes at veterans’ hospitals, and AFGE can count on Hillary Clinton to help us get it done.”
The announcement comes just weeks after another large federal employee labor group, the American Postal Workers Union, threw its support behind Sanders. The senator has for years been a vocal advocate for the U.S. Postal Service and its workforce.
AFGE -- which represents 670,000 federal and Washington, D.C., workers, including 300,000 dues paying members -- anticipated a Clinton White House would fight for pay raises, expand benefits and preserve workplace rights.
Clinton has racked up support from several labor groups, including the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, American Federation of Teachers and the Service Employees International Union.
AFGE said an internal poll found a majority of its members planned to support a Democrat in the presidential election next year, and Clinton earned twice as much support as any other candidate. The union typically has endorsed Democratic politicians, but has occasionally supported Republicans down ballot.