On June 16, I said that I am “troubled” by Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO, serving as a board member for the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP).
Here is the response from TRCP’s Katie McKalip:
Mr. Trumka was selected to serve on the TRCP board at our spring meeting, and it was an oversight on our part that his name did not appear as a board member on our website. (We since have corrected this.)
A word about the TRCP’s connection with union members and union sportsmen. In 2007, the TRCP formed the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance, a hunting and fishing club that gives union sportsmen the opportunity to unite their union and outdoor lifestyles and connect with fellow union sportsmen across North America. When union members joined the USA, they also became TRCP partners and helped safeguard American sporting traditions and advance the TRCP mission, activities that have contributed to the TRCP’s effectiveness in furthering conservation objectives in the interest of the hunting and angling community.
Last year, the USA became a stand-alone entity apart from the TRCP, although our groups maintain close ties and seek opportunities to collaborate on common goals and bolster each others’ efforts when possible. Rich Trumka said this about the relationship between the TRCP and union sportsmen:
“The USA offers our nation’s union members the chance to organize, sustain and defend a uniquely American way of life – an outdoor heritage both for themselves and for their children and grandchildren to enjoy. The AFL-CIO is honored to have played a founding role in establishing the USA, and we welcome the opportunity to foster our partnership with the TRCP by continuing to promote a conservation message that resonates with union workers everywhere.”
Fundamentally, the TRCP created the USA to promote our conservation mission and strengthen the impact of American workers in determining responsible management and use of our natural resources. Working with influential leaders like Mr. Trumka helps us achieve our goals and objectives concerning public access for hunting and fishing and adequate funding for natural resources conservation.
And here is my response to her:
I appreciate your thorough explanation of the relationship between TRCP and Richard Trumka. And you make logical arguments for the relationship.
But I still am troubled by the partnership. I don't like Trumka's politics, not to mention his close ties to this president and his dream of "transforming" our country.
On the other side, I do believe that many union members, perhaps the majority, are not in lockstep with their leader and probably do support "traditional" American values and pastimes, including hunting and fishing.