Fink does not seek endorsment

First District Commissioner Dennis Fink did not seek the endorsement of AFSCME or the Central Labor Body.  The two have combined and have a new name this year but will still offer two endorsements.  It seems odd to me that one group would hand out two endorsements under the false precedence of being two groups.

This is not the first time that the commissioner has declined the endorsement by the union, in fact the only time he excepted the invite was when he first ran in 1996. He has declined ever sense then.  He has done so for a number of reasons.

Fink noted that he has seen instances when the AFSCME leadership has reminded elected officials that they are endorsed by them and they expect to get what they want. He pointed out one such case. He read in the Reader an article by Barb Olson that two union representatives went to the meeting to remind the council that seven of them where endorsed by AFSCME and one even said he expected a 7-2 vote.   My question is should elected officials be held to represent a group on all issues even if they are endorsed by them? I don’t believe so.

Also there was a flier in the county court house that read, contract negations start at the ballot box.  A poster that clearly was in violation of code. Yet the union took no shame in posting such a flier.

He added that he values the work and workers of the county and is proud to represent the first district and all of St.Louis county but because of the the union leadership he could not in good faith except the invite to the screening.

Commissioner Fink said in a statement that “We are elected by the citizens of the county to represent their interest.” I am one that commends commissioner Fink for standing up to special interested groups. This is a non-partisan race and endorsements that lead to beholding to any group should not take place.



about 12 years ago

Every year, right around election time, our local right-wing politicians start demonizing labor unions.  This is par for the course.

By the way, not only did Dennis Fink decline to seek the endorsement of the Central Labor Body (which includes everyone from teachers to constructions workers) -- he didn't even bother to show up for the screening.  It is one thing to decline an endorsement -- it is quite another to refuse to even talk with an important constituency within our community.  But then again, respect for constituents isn't one of Commissioner Fink's strong points.


about 12 years ago

Bro, do some proofreading, seriously.


about 12 years ago

"false precedence " >I think you mean false pretense. Presumably, since they just combined, or whatever, they desired to continue reaching people who had previously known the separate organizations.

"he excepted the invite " > I think you mean 'accepted'?

"ever sense then" > Look, I'm not trying to be particularly insulting, but did you just run this through spellcheck, or did you actually read it? If the latter is the case, have you passed fourth grade, and if so, where so we can chastise your teachers?

"seven of them where endorsed"> please see above

"he could not in good faith except the invite" > okay, second time. You don't know the difference between the words 'accept' and 'except'.

"Fink for standing up to special interested groups" > It's odd either way, but for this to make sense you mean "specially interested", I think.

"that lead to beholding to any group " > I give up. Find someone else to stand up for this position, as you've failed to bring any sort of intellectual credibility. I don't meant to nitpick over grammar or spelling, but if you present your opinion with the clarity and style of someone who is uneducated or lacking a standard level of education, you will end up tarnishing your viewpoint by making it appear to be the view held by people who are uneducated or lacking in intellectual rigor.

Oh, and I probably disagree with you.


about 12 years ago

Let's clear up some obfuscation in your post.

AFSCME is a member of the Duluth Central Labor Body. They have always been members of the Duluth Central Labor Body. They are not newly combined; they are long-term members of the Duluth Central Labor Body, just like UFCW, IBEW, Workers United, NALC, USW, LiUNA, IUPAT, MNA, IOUE, Carpenters, IAFF, Newspaper Guild, AFTRA, and countless other unions in Duluth. 

Individual unions can endorse candidates, as can the Central Labor Body. So yes, it is possible for a candidate to be endorsed by a union yet not get the Central Labor Body endorsement, or vice versa. That has happened before. 

You may not agree with unions, and that's okay. But don't circulate mis- or dis- information as a poorly disguised slam at Frank Jewell, who did come to the screening and did receive the endorsement of the labor community for his strong stances towards workers' rights and basic understandings of how to treat your fellow commissioners, which is something your candidate is lacking.


about 12 years ago

Julian, I was tempted to do as you did, but decided I didn't want to dignify this post with a response.  I will dignify your response with a response.

And I hope Fink goes down.


about 12 years ago

I'd love to hear my friend Girl from the North Country's thoughts on Mr. Fink.


about 12 years ago

Speaking of special "interested" how about 


"In response to Fink's letter, Chaudhary used his influence to have a provision inserted in this year's Natural Resources Bill to create a special regulation for Fish Lake ... The fallout from Chaudhary's actions resulted in the governor's veto of the entire Natural Resources Bill, an investigation of Chaudhary by the Senate Ethics Committee, and a decision by the DFL Executive Board of his senate district to strip him of his party endorsement."

Leave a Comment

Only registered members can post a comment , Login / Register Here

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Read previous post:
Connect the Dots!

Join your friends and neighbors for Duluth LISC and the At Home in Duluth Collaborative's fourth annual Neighborhood Celebration on...