Paul Valletta, the head of the Cranston fire fighters’ union who is organizing a picket line in front of a Gina Raimondo fundraiser tonight says his members plan to protest every fundraiser Raimondo has until the governor’s race is decided in 2014, he said today.
“When you do something like this to working class people,” Valletta said, “I would hope she would expect this.”
He added, “True Democrats don’t cross picket lines.”
Though, he acknowledged, many will. “I’m sure her millionaire Engage RI donors will cross the line,” he said.
Valletta said this is the first non-House Party-style fundraiser that Raimondo has had that they know about, so it is also the first one they will picket in front of. But he said the treasurer can expect a presence from organized labor at every fundraiser going forward. Like the rest of us, Valletta assumes Raimondo will run for governor in 2014.
He said he expects between 200 and 300 people tonight. Initially it was only supposed to a small group of fire fighters, but he said other union leaders reached out to him after WPRI broke the news earlier this morning.
“It isn’t the money, it’s the way she went about it,” he said. “You haven’t heard one labor person say leave the pensions the way they are. We all said we understand there is a problem let’s come to the table and fix it.”