Skip to comments.Mainland Labor-Union PAC Contributes Generously to Leftist Candidate for Puerto Rico Governor
Posted on 10/23/2020 10:42:59 AM PDT by Ebenezer
The New Jersey Laborers PAC, a super political action committee (PAC) that represents the interests of the influential Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA), gave on October 13 a $455,000 donation to Better Future Puerto Rico (PRMF), an independent-expenses committee that has been promoting the candidacy of Carlos Charlie Delgado Altieri for the [Puerto Rico] governorship.
Cirilo Tirado, Campaign Director for Popular Democratic Party (PPD) candidate Delgado, assured that any work PRMF does is completely separate from the candidates political committee. Independent-expenses committees Puerto Ricos equivalent of the mainland Super PACs such as PRMF are prohibited from coordinating campaign expenses with the committees authorized by the parties or the candidates.
I have nothing to do with the PRMF and this campaign knows nothing about this. You have taken me by surprise, Tirado told [the] Metro [media outlet].
PRMFs Facebook page went online on September 17 and the 14 posts it contained up to yesterday urged voting for Delgado or the PPD. As of yesterday, the page had 91 likes and 102 followers.
In 2018, the Executive Order by then-Governor Ricardo Rosselló to establish a $15-per-hour minimum wage for construction workers involved in federally-funded projects was attributed to LIUNAs lobbying efforts. It became known at the time that the union contracted with the World Professional Group firm which hired lobbyists linked to the PPD as well as the New Progressive Party [PNP] such as Elías Sánchez, Ónix Maldonado, and Luis Balbino.
Upon being asked if LIUNAs donation to PRMF was a sign that Delgado favored a $15 minimum wage for construction workers, Tirado was not categorical. Rossellós Executive Order was lifted by [incumbent] Governor Wanda Vázquez on September 30.
We in the campaign, when we saw that the governor spoke about the matter, that she lifted the Executive Order, announced that our position was to protect the salaries of public and private employees. That is the only line we have used and I think the PPDs position was made very clear yesterday (Wednesday), Tirado said in reference to a proposal to establish a Salary Commission that would analyze the state of the economy and the labor market in the island in order to consider the possibility of making adjustments to the minimum wage.
Tirado was asked if Delgado would promote a $15 minimum wage for construction workers.
Our governing program is equal for all. Im not saying that I dont favor an increase to $15. We aim to have every public or private employee get more money than they currently earn. Not only in the construction industry, but [also] in the service industry. That is why the (Salary) Commission to be established will be the one to provide the guidance, the Campaign Director and PPD senator replied.
LIUNAs financial support of PRMF is not the first time this American labor PAC gets involved in Puerto Rican politics during this election cycle.
In the summer of this year, the Growing Economic Opportunities PAC, whose headquarters are at the same address as the New Jersey Laborers PAC, launched a campaign against Governor Vázquez who, at the time, was in a [PNP] primary campaign [for governor] against Pedro Pierluisi.
In PRMFs case, [Puerto Rico] Elections Comptroller Walter Vélez stated that [the organization] was registered on September 15, but its report on corresponding earnings and expenses for the July-September quarter had not yet been released. Vélez said the report would possibly be released as soon as today.
The Federal Elections Commission website does show eight donations to PRMF totaling $566,000, of which the largest is from the New Jersey Laborers PAC at $455,000. Three remaining donations, which range from $1,000 to $25,000, came from R & R Management, Florida Distillers, Greengift Capital LLC, Quiñones and Arbona Law Offices PSC, Lighthouse Insurance Group, Aquasur Corporation, and Traksecure Corp.
In addition, PRMF has reported eight disbursements totaling $88,302.16. Four payments were made to 1493 Communications LLC for publicity and campaign signs. Three other payments were made to Quiñones and Arbona Law Offices PSC for legal services and a $1,000 loan.
PRMFs third-largest payment was for $15,200 to Yes Media Corp for campaign signs. This company has also charged Delgados campaign committee $4,100 so far this year for publicity services.
According to the Office of the Elections Comptroller website, PRMF is headed by Víctor D. Candelario Vega and Edwin Quiñones Rivera who are both partners at the Quiñones and Arbona Law PSC firm.
PPD candidate Delgado is mayor of the northern coastal town of Isabela. His party has historically been an ally of the mainland Democratic Party and a supporter of the island's current Commonwealth status. The PPD's leadership, however, has veered toward supporting independence (which they euphemistically call "sovereignty", which Delgado himself supports). It has also been reported that Delgado doesn't know English.
Governor Vázquez, a Republican and Trump supporter who was opposed by the Growing Economic Opportunities PAC, lost the PNP gubernatorial primary to Pierluisi, a Democrat, earlier this year. While the PNP has Republican and Democrat members and supports statehood for Puerto Rico, the GOP has been, historically, the driving force behind the statehood movement, of which the island's Democrats are relative newcomers. Former Governor Rosselló is also a Democrat.
Puerto Rico ping
Coordination laws should be unconstitutional because they are unenforceable and they are all coordinating anyway.
PR doesn’t want to be a state for some very good reasons. Only the leftists,ignorant and those bought and sold want statehood. This was told to me by a Puerto Rican working here and family there.
We will see. In tandem with its own general election, Puerto Rico will be voting in a “Statehood Yes or No” referendum on November 3.
Thats exactly how they defeated the good GOP governor they had about 10 or so years ago, I was in PR for about a week just a couple of days before the election and the hotel staff was terrified that the Dem would win because of all the union money. And he did.
The GOP governor had promoted private businesses, the tourism industry, better education, and all the things the Dem Marxist municipal unions hate. The SEIU was the big dog there.
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