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AFSCME calls JT allegations “misinformation”

Tuesday, Jan 31, 2017 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Yet another e-mail to state employees…

Dear Colleagues,

As AFSCME leadership conducts its campaign for strike authorization, we will continue to provide accurate information and clarify any confusion that employees bring to our attention.

On that note, we learned yesterday of what appears to be a troublesome attempt to discourage voting by those who are inclined to vote against a strike. We learned that some union representatives were telling employees that not participating in the strike vote would be the equivalent of a “no” vote. However, a week ago AFSCME’s spokesperson said, “a vote of more than 50 percent of those voting would grant the bargaining committee the authorization to call a strike if necessary.”

Based on that statement, what the reps were saying yesterday is wrong. We hope the union confirms that by not voting, you have no say in the strike authorization decision.

The decision to vote is yours and yours alone, and we will respect your choice either way. Our obligation is to make sure you have accurate information. To that end, please continue to reach out with questions and concerns and refer to the Labor Relations link on


John Terranova
Deputy Director
CMS Office of Labor Relations ​

Emphasis added because that’s a pretty serious allegation.

* From Anders Lindall at AFSCME Council 31…

The truth is plain and simple: We want every AFSCME member to vote, and they’re doing so by the thousands right now.

If the Rauner administration would seek compromise instead of spreading misinformation, we’d be at the bargaining table.


  1. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:27 pm:

    Well, if the bolded portion is not true, does that make sending the email an unfair labor practice?

    Maybe it’s just some Alternate Facts?

  2. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:27 pm:

    JT’s assertion is ridiculous! More “fake news”. The union wants as many people as possible to vote, so we can figure out the level of support for a strike.

  3. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:27 pm:

    Please make these JT emails stop. I’m not a legal expert, but this can’t be legal. It certainly is unethical. Can’t someone slap him upside the head with a ULP complaint or ethics violation?

  4. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:28 pm:

    Am I missing the bombshell here?

    I’m not convinced the Administration is trying to push people towards voting for a strike vote. This continued harassment can’t lead to any other conclusion. Every time one of these e-mails comes out the anger of the employees builds.

  5. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:28 pm:

    Sorry. I AM convinced

  6. - BeenHereB4 - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:30 pm:

    If John Terranova’s emails were at all factually accurate, you could justify continuing to be harassed by them.

    They are not. They are always riddled with lies. So…

    Right click on the email, move your curser down to the word “Junk”, slide it over to “Block Sender” and click. Then click OK.

    Now take a deep breath and let it out.
    You are now Terranova free.
    Feels good doesn’t it?

  7. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:32 pm:

    ==some union representatives were telling employees that not participating in the strike vote would be the equivalent of a “no” vote.==

    ==We want every AFSCME member to vote==

    Both of these statements can be true. I don’t see a denial by AFSCME of the allegation.

  8. - Truthteller - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:32 pm:

    The Rauner Administration is giving the Trump White House a run for its money- who can tell the biggest, boldest lies most frequently. Terranova is a trained fiction writer

  9. - Cheryl P - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:36 pm:

    I really wish people would learn to use the word “lie.”

    It’s not misinformation. It’s a lie.

  10. - Truthteller - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:38 pm:

    “Both of these statements could be true”
    They could be, but they are not. What is true is that both the above quote and the original allegation were made by unidentified sources.

  11. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:44 pm:


  12. - Anon - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    This is a strike authorization vote. I can’t imagine that the bargaining committee would consider a 50%+1 vote a strong support for the strike regardless of the turn out, but if they got 95% of 40% of the members?

    Is that strong support or lack of support?

    As many votes as possible is the only way to determine accurately where folks are standing.

  13. - Reese's Pieces - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:50 pm:

    They must have learned this from the same person(s) who said that AFSCME was striking on September 1st.

  14. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:50 pm:

    Which union reps? If Rauner’s shop really learned this, name names.

  15. - Ratso Rizzo - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 2:50 pm:

    Just blocked all emails from JT. No more nonsense in my mailbox.

  16. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:07 pm:

    “Baghdad John”

  17. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:16 pm:

    Somebody choosing not to vote has the identical mathematical outcome as a vote No.
    it’s math, not spin. JT needs to think again.

  18. - Earnest - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:28 pm:

    >From Anders Lindall at AFSCME Council 31

    Brief, concise statement. Nice to see some improving messaging.

  19. - Honeybear - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:42 pm:

    We’re doing just fine but thanks for the assist JT. Your emails have put people over the line! Stopping JT’s emails was cited over and over again as the reason they got out to vote YES!
    Thanks JT and thank you Governor Rauner

    United as never before.

  20. - A. Nonim Mouse - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:42 pm:

    the first strike chant has been written….

    “it’s math, not spin. JT needs to think again.”

  21. - Silent Budgeteer - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:45 pm:

    I’m wondering if this is just an attempt to mislead those AFSCME members who are participating in the vote. I can see the situation as follows: a union representative explains that casting a blank ballot is the same as a “no” vote, because the vote percentage would be based on the total number of ballots cast, not the total number of ballots that specifically said “yes” or “no”. For example, say there are 10 yes votes, 8 no votes, and 3 blank ballots cast. The percentage of “yes” votes is 10/21, or less than a plurality; it’s not 10/18, which is majority. It’s similar to the way votes are counted when the state votes on constitutional amendments.

    To get a true feeling of the membership, the union would want a “yes” or “no” vote on each ballot, with no blank ballots. It seems that JT is trying to make it look like there are problems where there may not be any.

  22. - blue dog dem - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:52 pm:

    Honey. From one union brother(sister) to another. Stop with the over the top union cheerleading. if you have ever been involved in a lengthy strike, you would realize that it is a life altering experience. Homes will be lost. Marriages ruined. Special occassions forgotten. This is a time for prayer and thoughtful compassion.

    That being said, good luck, and promise me you will let readers know were to send support. It is never enough, but small items of support remind you that you are not alone.

  23. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 3:55 pm:

    I can say there has been confusion as to where someone that doesn’t vote would be considered a no vote, along with the fact that if 50% of eligible voters vote, and 51% of those vote for a strike, is it 74% against, or 51% in favor of a strike.

    It does not surprise me that union stewards would be confused as well, after all this has never happened before.

  24. - Honeybear - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 4:04 pm:

    Thanks for the concern troll Blue Dog Dem! I’m touched. Yep, I’m cheerleading because I am on fire with the holy ghost of Labor! I’m encouraged by what I am hearing and seeing with my own eyes! Labor is rising! Believe me or not. Berate me if you will. I rest in the action of my sisters and brothers which I have witnessed.

    It’s kinda like that Churchill quote. Union members always do the right thing. After every other option is taken. I’m paraphrasing but you get the gist.

    Come on now old Blue, come on over to the other post and let’s bash EDGE for a bit. What say?

  25. - Whatever - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 4:07 pm:

    Even if the email is right about what “some union representatives” are saying, the conclusion drawn from that fact is pure speculation about the purpose or motives of the representatives. And the conclusion does not seem plausible to me. I would interpret it as an attempt to get out the vote, not to suppress it. As Anon. @ 2:49 points out, a non-vote IS a no vote. What matters is the percentage of members who approve a strike, not the percentage of those who voted. As an extreme example, if only 10% vote, AFSCME does not have a mandate to strike even if 100% of the votes are for a strike.
    If I had to judge motives based on only the facts in this email, I would conclude that JT is lying.

  26. - Triple fat - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 4:38 pm:

    Now let me tell my fellow members what a No vote is. If you vote no and the strike vote goes down… you will be re-electing Rauner!

  27. - AC - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 5:07 pm:

    Thanks JT, your reminder “by not voting, you have no say in the strike authorization decision” will help AFSCME get out their members to vote.

  28. - Cardsfan - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 5:47 pm:

    JT apparently needs more work to do. 3 emails in 3 consecutive work days, and the 9th email since August 5th!!

  29. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 6:21 pm:

    ==JT apparently needs more work to do. 3 emails in 3 consecutive work days, and the 9th email since August 5th!!

    One could say the same about some State workers posting on here during work hours…

  30. - Jim - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 7:05 pm:

    The Republicans are proposing a national right to work legislation in the US senate. That coupled with the fact the Supreme Court will hear the Cali Teachers case with the newly appointed justice….. unions won’t exist in 2 years.

  31. - Cardsfan - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 7:18 pm:

    =One could say the same about some State workers posting on here during work hours=

    Not all state workers work day shift Mon-Fri. Just as an FYI

  32. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 31, 17 @ 8:15 pm:

    So JT and the union agree,all AFSCME members need to vote!

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