December 17, 2015 

On Endorsements

CWA Backs Sanders In Presidential Election

The Communications Workers of America (CWA) Executive Board announced today, following a three-month poll of members across the United States, it has endorsed Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential election.

CWA is IAPE's parent Union, and is divided into a number of regional and industrial sectors. IAPE is a part of The NewsGuild (TNG) sector of CWA.

Representing journalists across North America, TNG has historically abstained from CWA endorsement votes. Similarly, IAPE refrains from endorsing political candidates at any level. We recognize that many of our members are politically engaged, and we encourage that activity to the extent the Dow Jones Code of Conduct permits.

As a Union, IAPE offers no financial support for any candidate or party.

Before this morning's announcement by the CWA Board, TNG president Bernie Lunzer — a member of the CWA Executive Board — released the following statement on behalf of The NewsGuild:

Why The NewsGuild-CWA Will Abstain from Today's Vote

Since The Newspaper Guild joined the CWA in 1995, the Guild president and a CWA vice president has abstained from Executive Board votes on U.S. presidential endorsements.

We do so on behalf of our many members who cover politics and government. The NewsGuild-CWA takes seriously their need to function with full objectivity. We respect and protect that principle.

Abstaining from making an endorsement does not mean that we won't be urging those members who can and should be involved to be active and support a candidate who shares our labor and social justice values. We will be asking them to help register people to vote, get out the vote and educate fellow members.

The message from the leadership of The NewsGuild-CWA is that everyone can play a role in the fight for social justice. Nobody gets a pass. We also stress that all journalists have the constitutional right to cast a vote, and we believe they should exercise that right.

Lastly, we remind everyone that the First Amendment protects freedom of association and freedom of speech. The right to unionize is an essential part of the freedom of association. It is critical that we all act to reverse the many years of hostile attacks that have weakened U.S. labor law and contributed, catastrophically, to the fall of America's middle class.

We hope this message better explains the process by which CWA has chosen to endorse a candidate in the 2016 presidential election, and the positions taken by IAPE and TNG. If you have any questions about this message — or any IAPE matter — please contact our Union office.