West Wing stars back US unions
For many people, life imitated TV when Barack Obama became President. They see him as the real-life embodiment of everyone’s favourite US President, Josiah (Jed) Bartlet from The West Wing. Now, though, as Obama’s real-life West Wing takes shape, some of the actors who played the President and his team have joined up to support publicly the campaign of America’s trade unions for the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) which would make it easier for working people to join unions and bargain collectively with their employers.
Actor Martin Sheen – who played President Bartlet – has recorded a radio spot campaigning for EFCA, paid for by “Catholics for Working Families”. And he, Bradley Whitford and Richard Schiff (who played Josh Lyman and Toby Ziegler respectively in The West Wing), launched an AFL-CIO campaign in March called Faces of the Employee Free Choice Act, uniting ordinary working people with famous faces.
The TUC General Council agreed in April to do whatever we can to support US unions in their campaign to see EFCA enacted, and we’ll be looking at famous UK faces to back up their American counterparts. Now, who is the UK equivalent of President Bartlet – Harriet Jones MP out of Dr Who?