Now that Terry McAuliffe has won the election, he has a lot to prove to Virginians. Winning the election doesn’t mean people like him, but the business leaders in the state are hoping that they can count on him, even though they have typically supported Republican candidates in the past. On the other hand, union leaders are hoping he can entertain their needs as well, but is it possible?
The union leaders helped fund McAuliffe’s campaign while he was also promising solutions to and receiving endorsements from anti-union businesses. Playing both sides in the race is one thing, but now that he’s governor how is he going to please both pro-business and pro-labor groups?
The union leaders donated to McAuliffe and protested Republican nominee Ken Cuccinelli while launching grass-roots efforts to have McAuliffe elected. They believe they deserve his support now or else he will be backing out on his word. Going against the things he fought for to be elected would make him an absolute hypocrite.
In an article published by The Washington Post, John Niemiec, President of the International Association of Fire Fighters affiliated Fairfax County Professional Firefighters and Paramedics said, “It’s just a very simple expectation: to have a seat at the table. And Terry has said over and over again that the firefighter will have a seat at the table. In a right-to-work state, that is huge.”
McAuliffe was not the ideal candidate in Virginia but for union leaders he is leaps and bounds above Ken Cuccinelli. Cuccinellifought tirelessly to belittle the labor movement. McAuliffe gives union leaders hope. However, McAuliffe still has to balance his promises to them with the business leaders in the state. Now that he’s governor-elect, he needs to make these decisions and might end up making one of the sides very unhappy.