Will Lehman, UAW presidential candidate: ‘Why I’m not supporting Shawn Fain on the second ballot’

Will Lehman, UAW presidential candidate: ‘Why I’m not supporting Shawn Fain on the second ballot’


The following statement was made by Will Lehman, a grassroots worker who is running for UAW President. For more information on the Lehman campaign, visit WillforUAWPresident.org.

UAW presidential candidate Shawn Fain is asking me to support him in the re-election to replace current UAW President Ray Curry. which will take place according to the UAW inspector of elections sometime between January 12 and February 28.

There are two main reasons why I do not support Fain.

First, the first round of the election is completely illegal, and the results should not be verified. In fact, less than 10% of the 1.1 million active and retired workers authorized to vote voted. The top two candidates, Curry and Fain, each received less than 4% of the eligible members’ votes.

These results are not due to worker indifference, as Fain suggests. It is the result of a deliberate policy by the UAW bureaucracy to block the vote and deny hundreds of thousands of UAW members the right to decide who leads their union.

Moreover, a large number of workers did not even know that the election was taking place. The UAW did not send any notice to inform them. There are no posters posted in factories and other workplaces. Many workers never received ballots despite calls to local union offices and a UAW auditor.

How else to explain that only 1,279 members out of 30,000, or 4% of the possible number, and specifically of the 5810 and 2865 chapters of the UAW at the University of California (UC) voted in the election? Far from being indifferent, these members are among the 48,000 UC workers involved in the largest university labor strike in American history. Other locals in UAW Region 6 with very low turnout rates include 29 votes out of 11,000 graduate workers at California State University (UAW Local 4123) (0.2%) and 74 votes out of 9,000 University adjuncts of Washington (0.8%) who are members of Local 4121.