By Candice Bernd, Truthout

[Amid the biggest strike wave in decades, one of the largest and most politically active unions, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, will hold its most consequential leadership election in a generation. The outcome of this election will go a long way toward determining whether the Teamsters will emerge as one of the most militant, strike-oriented unions in the country or revert to more conservative business unionism. Needless to say, a more militant IBT would significantly boost the power of organized labor during this time of renewed activism. — Progressive Hub]

As a strike wave continues to roil the labor market this month as hundreds of thousands of workers find themselves newly empowered amid ongoing supply chain shortages and the Great Resignation, an election underway within the International Brotherhood of the Teamsters is set to determine how North America’s largest and most powerful union will meet a moment of rising militancy within the broader labor movement.

For the first time in 25 years, Teamsters rank-and-file members are being presented with a ballot that does not have the name of James P. Hoffa, son of the notorious Jimmy Hoffa, the Teamster president whose history and links to organized crime were depicted in Martin Scorsese’s 2019 dramatic biopic, The Irishman.

The mid-November election will determine whether the 1.3 million-member union will chart a new direction away from the business-unionist polices of the younger Hoffa’s administration. It will also determine whether the union will leave behind its legacy of internal corruption: The election marks the first since the phasing out of a 1989 consent decree that put the union under federal government oversight to stamp out the influence of organized crime.

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