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Donovan, in union visit, lauds Reagan on economy

Labor secretary Raymond Donovan stoutly defended what he called the Reagan administration's ''excellent progress'' toward solving the nation's economic problems and told construction unionists in Bal Harbour, Fla., that, as in 1980, large numbers of workers and their families will vote for Ronald Reagan this fall.

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Mr. Donovan met with two small building trades groups and the International Longshoremen's Association while in Bal Harbour. But the AFL-CIO, and most Florida union leaders, ignored his visit. AFL-CIO spokesman Murray Seegar called Donovan ''no friend of labor.''

Donovan took issue with sharp criticism of the administration by AFL-CIO leaders and said the union movement today faces serious challenges and must work with employers and the government if the nation's economy and American labor are to be competitive.

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