WASHINGTON – An attack from Rob Garagiola accusing fellow 6th Congressional District Democratic candidate John Delaney of anti-union sentiments may have been taken out of context, a CNS analysis shows.
The campaign for Sen. Rob Garagiola, D-Montgomery, issued a news release Thursday titled, “Anti-Union John Delaney’s Assault on Collective Bargaining,” that accuses entrepreneur John Delaney of using the non-profit he founded, Blueprint Maryland, to call unions a “deterrent to business expansion.”
The attack cites a Forbes magazine article that calls Delaney a “loan shark” and a report where Delaney “goes so far as to indicate Maryland should become a ‘right to work’ state, which would completely kill labor unions and collective bargaining rights in Maryland.”
The report, Maryland’s Business Climate and Vulnerability to Federal Downsizing, was presented by “Blueprint Maryland, John K. Delaney, chairman” but was not Delaney’s personal opinion. It was an analysis of the business economy in Maryland created after a roundtable discussion with business leaders.
“It’s an implication,” Garagiola’s campaign manager Sean Rankin said. “He doesn’t finalize it but he’s making assertions … There’s only one conclusion to draw.”
In the two pages of the 46-page report that mention unions, the non-profit compares Maryland’s union climate to others in the country, specifically Virginia, and analyzes factors that might make Maryland less competitive.
The report said that companies might move elsewhere because Maryland has twice as many union memberships as competitor states like Virginia, but the report never suggests that “Maryland should become a ‘right to work’ state.”
“As the only person in the campaign from a union family, I’m really surprised that Rob would simultaneously attack a not-for-profit designed to do research on job creation and somehow claim I don’t support labor unions. More than surprised,” Delaney said in a statement.
Delaney responded to the anti-union claims by citing his history: He received a four-year, $1,000 scholarship from his father’s union, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 164 to attend Columbia University according to Local 164 president John M. DeBouter. Delaney’s father, Jack, has been a member for more than 50 years.
“He shouldn’t have forgotten where he came from,” Rankin said about the scholarship.
“I feel bad for him (Garagiola) as these inaccurate negative attacks must reflect a deep insecurity on his part that the congressional seat he worked hard to create for himself is slipping away,” Delaney said.
Garagiola has gained the support of the Service Employees International Union, the United Food Commercial Workers Union, International Association of Fire-Fighters Local 1664, the Fraternal Order of Police of Montgomery County and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Locals 24, 26, and 307.
John Delaney has not released his list of endorsements. His campaign said it will roll out the list in the coming days.