TheLiberalOC has obtained a letter from the Los Angeles/Orange Counties Building and Construction Trades Council to Henry Vandermeir of the Democratic Party of Orange County that unless Greg Diamond, a lawyer and candidate for District Attorney, isn’t removed from Diamond’s Vice Chair of the DPOC North leadership post, the union will immediately withdraw all support of the DPOC. Diamond also blogs for the Orange Juice blog. The letter can be read here.
The LiberalOC has learned that other unions and candidates endorsed by the Building/Trades are being encouraged to join the Building/Trades union’s efforts to remove Diamond from his party leadership position, and while unions have complained about various members and candidates over the years, a formal letter demanding a member’s removal is considered unprecedented.
Other organizations copied on the March 31 letter include the CA State Building and Construction Trades, the California Federation of Labor, the Orange County Labor Fed and the California Democratic Party. The letter was signed by Ron Miller, executive secretary, and Jim Adams, a council representative for Orange County. The union is only asking for Diamond’s removal from a leadership position, not his Central Committee position.
The union’s gripes with Diamond stem from his role as a lawyer for CATER and the lawsuit filed against the City of Anaheim for its approval of the extension of the Anaheim Convention Center in addition to Diamond’s opposition to numerous other construction projects in Orange County.
Excerpts from the letter include:
“Unemployment in the construction industry still remains at an all time high. Every job is important. Yet Mr. Diamond acts openly to take jobs away from working class people….We can’t block people’s jobs and ask them to vote for our candidates…(we) cannot act against the interests of our 140,000 dues paying members.”
The union references several projects not supported by most Democrats — the 241 extension, the Tesoro extension, Poseidon Desalination and 405 Improvements as examples of projects Diamond has opposed giving him “a miserable track record of opposing numerous construction projects in…Orange County.” And for those suggesting, “this is just one union” which doesn’t reflect the viewpoints of labor unions in general, we’ve been assured this effort is the tip of the iceberg.
The DPOC is treating this as an internal issue and had no comment for TheLiberalOC. The letter and Diamond’s status are sure to be a topic of conservation at the next party meeting. While Diamond hasn’t violated any party rules, he can be removed from his position as Vice Chair for any reason with a simple two thirds vote.