Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa is offering no apologies for comments he leveled on Labor Day at tea party members, saying what he said are sentiments shared by many American workers.
Reacting to criticism from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and the tea party movement, Hoffa said in a statement late Tuesday that union members “didn’t start this fight — the right wing did,” and he repeated a portion of his remarks made in Detroit before an appearance by President Barack Obama.
“My comments on Labor Day in Detroit echo the anger and frustration of American workers who are under attack by corporate-funded politicians who want to destroy the middle class,” Hoffa said. “We’re tired of seeing good-paying jobs shipped overseas. This fight is about the economy, it’s about jobs and it’s about rebuilding America.
“As I said yesterday in Detroit, we all have to vote in order to take these anti-worker politicians out of office.”
Hoffa denied accusations that his comments were designed to incite violence, saying that his call to “take these son of a bitches out and give America back to America” was simply a plea to vote tea party lawmakers out of office because he blames them for stalling efforts to create jobs.
“We’re fighting back. That’s what Teamsters do — we stand up for what is right,” Hoffa said. “I will never apologize for standing up for my fellow Teamsters and all American workers.”
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