By Karen Stokes
Wisconsin Teamsters Joint Council 39 announced its endorsement of businessman Alex Lasry for the U.S. Senate today at a press conference at Teamsters Local 200, 6200 W Bluemound Rd.
This is the first labor endorsement for any candidate in the 2022 Wisconsin Senate race.
“Receiving the first union endorsement of this race is an important step toward building the momentum needed to flip this Senate seat and start delivering real results for Wisconsinites,” Lasry said.
Teamsters Joint Council 39 represents more than 18,000 workers at four locals across Wisconsin.
“We’re proud to endorse the next senator for the State of Wisconsin,” said Thomas Bennett, secretary-treasurer of General Teamsters Local Union No. 200. “One thing Alex brings to the table is, he already knows the state of Wisconsin is a whole state.”
Lasry, senior vice president of the Milwaukee Bucks, is on leave from his executive position.
According to Lasry for Wisconsin, he was involved in securing a labor agreement between the team and building trades that covered both the construction of Fiserv Forum and the nearby Deer District. He led negotiations for a historic project labor agreement that included provisions to hire women and minorities that are often underrepresented among union workers.
“His efforts to provide union jobs as part of the Fiserv Forum construction is a prime example of his record of putting his support of organized labor into action,” said Joint Council 39 Political Coordinator Bill Carroll in a press release.
Lasry is joining a growing field of Democrats vying to take on Republican Sen. Ron Johnson’s seat in 2022.
No word yet on whether Johnson will seek a third term.
Democratic opponents for the nomination so far are State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, radiologist Dr. Gillian Battino and Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson.
“We have tried to operate and tried to show that progressive values are actually good for the economy and good for business,” Lasry said. “The best way to do that is to make sure people have the ability to have a voice in the business and can collectively bargain and unionize.”
“This is going to be a staple of our campaign and a staple when I’m the next U.S. Senator that unions will be brought back to have a voice of the people working there and have a say on how companies are growing because this is how we’re growing the middle class again and making sure America is continuing to grow moving forward,” Lasry said.