Tuesday, Gregory Lance, Machinist Union official in Charlotte, North Carolina, released the following statement:
"I am calling upon the Democratic Party to immediately replace President Barack Obama as the Democratic nominee for President. There are numbers of other officials, both elected, in the Democratic Party, and from the ranks of Organized Labor, who could fulfill the duties of President far better than Barack Obama. I am calling upon the Party to nominate a team that would campaign for the real needs of organized labor, city and state governments, and the U.S. military and intelligence services, which have been totally dismissed by Mr. Obama.
"Mr. Obama has compiled a record that underscores the need to immediately find a replacement. His health care reform plan, which has rightly earned the ire of the American public, is a brutal assault on Medicare and the need to provide medical services, and will increase the death rate among seniors and the whole population. Likewise, the candidate who was going to immediately close Guantanamo and now has banking lobbyists in the White House, instead championed the dictatorial National Defense Authorization Act, the renewal of the Patriot Act and other nefarious bills. The NDAA provisions would open our jails to American citizens who could be indefinitely detained, under mere suspicion of some 'terrorist' association. Obama's shutdown of the manned space program is not only impeachable, but represents a total reversal of the Kennedy space policy which brought out the best in our citizenry. After the inspiring landing of Curiosity, even the Mars program is going to be sacrificed at the altar of fiscal austerity. For the skilled labor movement, which I represent, we need programs that would move us to ever higher technologies, and higher skill levels. Nothing addresses that need like the space program.
"Overall, the national economy is in even worse shape under Obama than under President Bush, which is something I never thought I would see. Contrary to the false reports, unemployment has been rising not falling. Our cities are filing for bankruptcy protection, as they confront falling tax revenue and rising costs. Union pension plans are being ripped up; medical plans are going by the wayside. President Obama's failure to endorse the Wisconsin labor campaign to reverse the union busting did not go unnoticed. Real unemployment is closer to 20% than the absurd 8.3%! Rather than repeal the Free Trade legislation as promised by Obama in 2008, Obama has accelerated the damage with the Panama, Colombian and Korean Free Trade agreements, and now the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership.
"Restoring our real, productive economy must begin with the restoration of Glass Steagall the separation of commercial banking from investment and insurance banking, the legislation that served the nation well for 66 years, and handcuffed the Wall St banks' worst speculative intentions. There is a bill in Congress, HR 1489, with 80 sponsors, which will re-instate the Glass Steagall Act and begin the breakup of the Too Big To Fail Banks. President Obama is not only on the record in opposition to this bill, but he recently deployed his team to strong-arm members of the Democratic Platform committee to withdraw a proposed plank from the party platform that would restore Glass Steagall!
"Finally, this Nobel Prize winning President, escalated the conflict in Afghanistan, and has personally deployed drones in assassinations of American citizens and others world wide, in direct violation of the UN Charter. He also launched the illegal war in Libya, without Congressional approval, in direct violation of the Constitution, an impeachable offense. Now he is maneuvering the United States to support a suicidal Israeli attack on Iran, and to militarily intervene into the Syria imbroglio. The US military and the relevant military institutions in the Middle East all oppose our entry into this situation. Any US intervention in this region could trigger a general and potential thermonuclear war with both Russia and China. "The United States is now on a path toward imminent economic and military self destruction, which could cause similar consequences world wide.
"It is past time to address this disaster. I hold the same opinion of Governor Romney, and am in no way endorsing the Republican Romney ticket. Unfortunately the fish stinks from the head; hence I am calling upon the President to step down prior to the convention. I am urging sane forces in the Democratic Party to come together in the spirit of John Kennedy, and nominate a team that can reverse our course in time. I will be circulating my call to the relevant people in Organized Labor and the Democratic Party to spur this process."
Gregory Lance is on the Legislative Committee of Local 1725 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Charlotte, NC. He has been a delegate to numerous legislative conferences of the North Carolina AFL CIO and the IAMAW in Washington DC. He successfully introduced and passed resolutions at previous conferences of the NC AFL CIO and the NC IAMAW endorsing the restoration of Glass Steagall and HR 1489.