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Building trades unions hold fundraiser for Blunt


ST. LOUIS – U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt held a fundraiser with members of the building trade unions in Washington D.C. Tuesday night, specifically those that work in the transportation industry, pulling support democratic opponents like eSecretary of State Jason Kander typically count on.

Members of the North America’s Building Trades Unions Political Education Fund; International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers; International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, and Transportation Workers; International Association of Fire Fighters and others were invited to the reception where the minimum entry fee was a $1,000 for individuals and $2,500 for a PAC.

Jeff Aboussie of the St. Louis Building and Construction Trades Council
Jeff Aboussie of the St. Louis Building and Construction Trades Council

Jeff Aboussie, the executive secretary-treasurer of the St. Louis Building and Construction Trades Council, organized the fundraiser in the hopes of showing that unions appreciate those who help them on both sides of the aisle.

“This fundraiser is a testament that many people in the trades stand by those who have stood by us regardless of party,” Aboussie said. “Senator Blunt has a long record of being a friend with the building trades. He’s been a consistent friend in the Senate, voting for reinvestment in our nation’s infrastructure.”

Blunt sits on the U.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and he has made infrastructure one of the focuses of his last six years in the Senate. He was one of 83 senators to vote in favor of 2015’s five-year, $305 billion infrastructure bill, and he and Missouri’s Sen. Claire McCaskill sponsored the Grid Reliability Bill Act within that bill, which seeks to improve the reliability of the grid and help electricity providers deal with conflicting regulations at the state and federal levels.

The fundraiser marks an interesting point in the race as union support has mainly gone towards Kander who has endorsements from the AFL-CIO, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Communications Workers of America and a litany of other unions within the state.