Giannoulias looks to consolidate union support, gets Teamsters backing in Democratic race to replace Jesse White as Illinois secretary of state

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Rick Pearson, Chicago Tribune
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Former state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias on Friday received the backing of Teamsters Joint Council 25, a significant show of support as he continues to try to consolidate union support more than a year ahead of the Democratic primary contest for secretary of state.

The Teamsters represent 100,000 Illinois workers across many industries and Terrence J. Hancock, the joint council’s president, said Giannoulias “has a long history of standing with unions and workers on the job site.”

Giannoulias said the Teamsters “play an incredibly important role in growing the labor movement in Illinois” and said he will “continue to earn their support to protect worker rights and support middle-class families.”

Giannoulias is one of four announced candidates for the Democratic nomination to replace veteran Secretary of State Jesse White, who has announced he will not seek reelection. Others in the race include Chicago City Clerk Anna Valencia and city Alds. Pat Dowell, 3rd, and David Moore, 17th.

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Giannoulias previously received the endorsement of the politically active Service Employees International Union State Council, the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union Locals 881 and Local 1546, 14 locals in the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees union, Painters District Local Council 30, Plasterers and Cement Mason’s Local 502 and the Illinois Pipe Trades Association.

Valencia has the backing of another politically potent union, UNITE HERE Local 1, as well as Painters District Council’s 14 and 58.

State Sen. Michael Hastings of Frankfort, who dropped his bid for the Democratic nomination last week to seek reelection to the General Assembly, had the backing of the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters.

Giannoulias was state treasurer from 2007 to 2011. In 2010, he lost a bid for the U.S. Senate against one-term Republican Sen. Mark Kirk.

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June 25, 2021 at 03:52PM

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