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Hoffa, Saunders speak at Toledo Teamsters rally

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Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa speaks during a rally at Teamsters Local Union 20.

The Blade/Andy Morrison
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Two of the nation’s most powerful union leaders joined local labor officials at a rally today in Toledo to urge union members to approve Issue 2 and elect their slate of Democratic candidates.

James Hoffa, president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, and Lee Saunders, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO, spoke to about 150 local union members outside the Teamsters Local 20 hall on South Hawley Street.

The union leaders told the crowd that Ohio is a battleground state and President Obama will fight for the issues that are important to the working, middle-class families in Ohio and across the country.

“Mitt Romney, I got some bad news for you,” Mr. Hoffa said. “ You ain’t going to win Ohio and you ain’t going to be president.”

Mr. Saunders, who was elected president of AFSCME in June, told the union members that they and others in the state control the destiny of the country and President Obama will fight to represent the 47 percent.

“The only way that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan get close to that White House is if they stay on the line in the tour with everybody else,” he said.

Issue 2 is a proposal on the statewide ballot that would amend the state constitution to place redistricting in the hands of an independent, state-funded citizens' commission.

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