Labor beats drums for big vote
Next Tuesday is Solidarity Day II for the AFL-CIO. That's when unions will try to get blue-collar workers and their families out to the polls and voting ''to bring to Washington senators and representatives who share our views of the government's role in a modern industrial society,'' as the federation's president, Lane Kirkland, puts it.
In 1981, labor's Solidarity Day I brought 250,000 to 400,000 unionists and allies to Washington for a mass rally against President Reagan's economic policies.
Polls show that blue-collar and other union workers who supported Mr. Reagan for the presidency in 1980 may now be moving back into Democratic ranks. As the AFL-CIO sees it, getting out a strong labor vote can mean the election of Democrats in districts where races appear to be close.
But their success is not assured. In the past, the unemployed have shown a poor voting record. Many now working are considered likely to be influenced by easing pressures from inflation. Labor political strategists hope the Democrats can win the Senate and pick up 30 to 35 seats in the House. Unless there is a very large voter turnout, they concede privately that those objectives are not likely to be reached.